Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Maryland

I have two adult sons, age 46 and 42. One of the sons has been estranged from the family, at his choice, for over a decade. I am making this will to insure that the younger son is the sole heir of my estate. Is there any extra wording needed to secure this in Maryland? (For instance, another family member in IL had to leave the estranged member of the family $2.00 or they could contest the will.)

Asked on 7/02/14, 8:26 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Cedulie Laumann Arden Law Firm, LLC

Maryland law allows one to "disinherit" children in most circumstances. Generally planners will want to make the lack of any bequest express, identify all the children and include a no contest provision (note that Maryland law limits no contest provisions so they should be drafted accordingly). Sometimes a token bequest ($10.00, etc.) is included.

There are no special words mandated by law but including the referenced items will help ensure validity.

Note that an often stronger and better planning mechanism is to focus on title to the assets themselves (for instance, by doing enhanced life estate deeds and the like) which leaves no probate estate to contest. You're welcome to call my firm or any other Maryland lawyer of your choosing to seek advice on this.

While I hope this post helps it doesn't create any attorney/client relationship or substitute for getting specific advice on the particulars of your situation.

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Answered on 7/02/14, 10:57 am

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