Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Georgia

My ex-wife died and per the divorce decree it stated "The Wife shall maintain in full force and effect life insurance, in the amount of $150,000.00 upon her life. The Wife shall name the minor children as the beneficiaries of said life insurance with the Husband to be custodian/trustee of the funds on behalf of the minor children. The policy or policies shall be kept in full force until all the obligations required of the Husband under the agreement have been terminated. To the extent not covered by life insurance, all paymens required to be made by either party shall be a first charge against his/her estate, and the executors, trustees, or personal representatives of the parties estates are hereby directed to pay such sums prior to payment of other creditors or beneficiaries of the estate, notswithstanding provisions of each party's Last Will and Testament to the contrary." She didnt' have a will. She only took out a $100,000.00 policy. I have 1 minor child, 16 year old daughter. Can she file anything against her mothers estate/house to recover the additional $50,000.00 per the divorce decree?

Asked on 8/04/10, 1:01 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Paula McGill Attorney at Law

Has the estate been opened yet? If so, you should hire an attorney to ensure the terms of the decree are complied with by the executor. Furthermore, if she didn't have a will, you daughter may be her sole heir.

I see you're in Gwinnett County. If the mother also lived in Gwinnett or other county in the Atlanta Metro area, you can contact me to obtain more information about moving forward in probate court. (770)367-1234

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Answered on 8/09/10, 2:00 pm

It depends on the circumstances. Although your wife did not have a will, she may have had assets. Was she remarried and had a living spouse at the time of her death? Or just your daughter? If it is the latter and your daughter is the only heir, then she will inherit the assets anyway and there is not much you can do.

The only way to know is to contact a probate litigation lawyer. You also need to find out if an estate has been opened and if not, then you may need to open one. if an estate has been opened, then you will need to contact the personal representative to see what assets are in the estate.

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Answered on 8/17/10, 1:22 pm

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