If the person named in your Will as the person to receive the majority of your estate has you and your mother murdered, would you want that person’s heirs to receive the inheritance instead? It sounds like an odd question to ask, but there is a point to it and it is a real life issue surrounding the estate of Ben Novack, Jr.
Novack’s wife was convicted of having him and his mother killed in horrific fashion. She was also the person named in his Will as the primary heir. Ordinarily, a person who murders someone cannot inherit from the murderer. This is the law for obvious reasons. However, in Novack’s case, it appears that his money will go to his wife’s child and grandchildren because they are her heirs. They, however, are not Novack’s legal children. His relatives have attempted to fight this, but they face an uphill battle trying to have his Will invalidated.
The lesson that we can all learn from this is that it is important to think about what might happen if our intended heir cannot inherit from us. It happens. The usual reason is not murder, but because the person named in a Will passed away previously. The thing for you to consider is if someone does predecease you, do you want the inheritance to go to his or her heirs or would you rather it go to someone else? Make your estate plans accordingly.
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