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CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10244
Experience:  Civil litigation attorney for individuals and businesses.
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My father became ill and passed away recently. He did not

Customer Question

My father became ill and passed away recently. He did not have a will. All of his children know that his wish upon death was to be cremated and the remains to be sent to an old hunting camp, which is still in the trust of his children.
However, upon his death his current wife has decided that she is going to keep the remains and have a funeral.
My father was not a religious man and was very specific in advising of his wishes. However, he was also a trusting man who felt that if everyone were in agreement there did not need to be a will.
We are happy for his wife to keep every material posession, but we would like to see his wishes carried out for the disposition of his remains.
Is there any possibility that his verbal wishes were a binding contract prior to his passing?
My family just wants my father to be laid to rest properly.
Thank you.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 2 years ago.

Dear Customer, I am very sorry to learn of your loss, and of this situation.

Unfortunately as your father did not create either a will (or a written statement regarding his wishes), his surviving spouse has the right to determine the disposition of his remains under Health and Safety Code 7100.


I wish that I had a different answer for you, but absent a writing from your father, there isn't a legal mechanism to change this disposition.