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Bequest Questions

Bequests occur when gifts of some kind are given through the avenue of a last will and testament. Individuals on both the giving end and receiving end of these bequests can be at times unsure of what it entails. Uncertainties of what a bequest is or if a bequest can be denied often lead to questions like the ones answered below.

What is a bequest?

A bequest is the giving of property via a will. There are two different types of wording to describe what kind of bequest is being used. There are conditional bequests that are given only if a certain event has occurred by the time of the death and there are executor bequests that are given only if a certain event happens in the future.

In the state of Texas, can an heir refuse a bequest in a will and redirect the bequest to a chosen sibling?

A bequest can be refused by an heir but delegating who the bequest will then go to is not within their powers. If a bequest is refused then the asset will pass to heirs according to the conditions of the will. Refusal of a bequest is called a disclaimer and must be given in writing. The disclaimer would need to be notarized and given to the executor of the will within a certain time period from the date of the death.

I received a bequest, while married, of $500,000 from a grandparent, which I still have in investments in my name. Will that asset remain with me solely after divorce or will the court deem that to be a marital asset under Missouri law?

Under Missouri law, marital property is allocated between spouses. There is a statute that excludes inheritance (gifts, bequests, devise or descent) from the umbrella of marital property. Missouri also excludes from marital property any increase of value from the inheritance.

What is the simplest way to eliminate a monetary bequest to someone?

A bequest is found in a will. Any types of marking or crossing out on a legal and valid will would more than likely void the will. In order to eliminate or make a change to a bequest an individual will need to either create a new will or they can create a codicil to the current will.

Can the person that filed the letter of Administration change the monetary specific Bequest or anything in a Last Will and Testament and what is a monetary specific Bequest?

A monetary specific bequest is basically a specific amount of money that is left to a certain named person in a will. There is no one except the person who will names bequest that is allowed to change any portion of the will. Once the person has died then absolutely no one can change the will. With that being said there are times when bequests are not honored. This will happen if the bequest is no longer in the estate to be honored. As an example, if John was bequeathed $1,000 and the estate has no money after expenses are paid, then the bequest cannot be honored because there is no money to be given.

Having a good understanding and gather the right kind of information about bequests can help when dealing with circumstances involving last wills and testaments. Experts can help with questions about what a bequest is or if a bequest can be refused. Get the answers fast and affordably by asking an Expert.
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Recent Bequest Questions

  • My mother passed away in 1998 in Chicago, Illinois. Her will

    My mother passed away in 1998 in Chicago, Illinois. Her will dictated that her possessions, including a valuable modern art collection, was to be split 50/50 between my sister and I. A year or so later I discovered that my sister had cleaned out my mother's last apartment, taking 100% of everything, the art there, art books, antique and valuable furniture - everything. I was shocked but took no action. In 2005 I finally confronted my sister about her inappropriate actions, taking things that were not morally or legally hers. Her response was to cut me completely out of her life. We did not see or speak to each other for the past 8 years. Today an attorney advised me that she had died yesterday. Furthermore, outside of a small cash bequest to my daughter, she left all the art, furniture and personal property to other people, specifically the stepfamily of my father. My question is - do I still have the right to claim 50% of the property my mother left to me, appropriated illegally by my sister back in 1998 and 1999? Is there a statue of limitations as to the distribution outlined in a will? Thank you.
  • We have been told that our church has been named in a womans

    We have been told that our church has been named in a woman's will, but the person who is executing her estate will not divulge the dollar amount. It has been over 4 years since this person died. Do we have any recourse in asking to see the will or making sure we receive what this person wanted the church to have?
  • I own a small business. I borrowed from my small business.

    I own a small business. I borrowed from my small business. I recorded the loans with the IRS as loans to officers, was audited by the IRS and received a no change order, I completed the proper minutes of the corporation, and then made timely payments on the loans. The loans were made to remodel the marital home. Ex and I remodeled the house, ALL of the money borrowed was used to remodel the house.  ALL bills sent in my name and ex's name. Remodel took two years, Market crashed in 2008, so over $700K in remodel did NOT add up to much in house appraisal...only about $50,000 in equity ONLY counting 1st and 2nd mortgages with banks.  House was over priced at nearly $2M at the time of initial purchase.  Ex plans to argue that she did NOT know about the loans or the remodel, had nothing to do with the remodel and just thought I was spending money on weekend projects as a weekend warrior.  I have photos of her choosing various stones and paint colors...stilts were along side the house with construction trucks daily.  The total remodel included a third level and additional bedroom for our son at $600K, so we went to the bank and BOTH signed for a $100K HELOC. She plans to further argue that the $700K was nothing but income to me, is NOT debt and I should give her more money because the equity in the house is small. I have EVERY single receipt for the remodel and all her signatures. Q: Will the court go for something like this and say, give her more money. We filed joint tax returns for the years of the remodel and she received an additional $500,000 cash during the marriage. Business lost traction and funds dried up so we split up. Please comment.

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