Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in California

My husband was widow and had a family trust and last will and testament made before she passed. His daughter is the trustee upon his death. Am I eligible for anything from that trust? I live in California


Asked on 8/04/22, 5:26 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Timothy McCormick Haapala, Thompson & Abern, LLP

You have a somewhat complex situation here involving community property issues. Unless you are named a beneficiary of the trust, you have no direct claim on anything from the trust and you have no claim to his separate property, i.e., any assets he acquired before marriage to you. However, assets in the trust may have acquired quasi-community property characteristics. There may also be a community contribution claim attached to certain assets. For example if he bought a house before he married you, but there was still a mortgage on it and he continued to pay the mortgage out of community income, you would be entitled to half the principle paid down from date of marriage on. When people remarry, especially later in life, it really is a good idea to do a review and possible revision of both spouses estate plans. I would encourage you and your husband to do that with a qualified trusts and probate attorney in your area.

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Answered on 8/05/22, 10:20 am


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