As executor of my exhusband's estate, can I file suit for wrongful death and receive the benefits if the case is settled.

Asked almost 2 years ago - Mobile, AL

He was a diaysis patient for 5 years at a local Fresenius Medical facility. He suffered a mild heart attack in 2010, prior to his death on 06/2011. He has two adult siblings and never had kids of his own.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Paula Brown Sinclair

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . The executor of an estate usually has a valid claim against the state for the value of services rendered, but is not a beneficiary of the estate solely by virtue of the appointment. This is confusing in most cases, where one of the heirs or beneficiaries is also the executor. If, on the other hand, your ex-husband left a will executed after the divorce and naming you as a beneficiary, you could be entitled to receive benefits. Without status for you as a beneficiary and without a will, the estate (after payment of debts) will go to the heirs at law.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    This answer is offered as a public service for general information only and may not be relied upon as legal advice.
  2. Randy William Ferguson

    Contributor Level 19

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    Answered . You could be paid for our time to pursue, but the laws of Alabama would decide who gets what. If you recover, the money goes to estate. His children would normally receive the money. An ex wife would not have a right to anything.

    The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The... more
  3. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . You can get paid a fee for being the executor, but the beneficiaries would obviously get the lion's share.

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  4. Kevin Coluccio

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . As noted by the others, the executor is entitled to reasonable payment for the services provided. With respect to any other benefits there are many factors to be considered. Consultation with an attorney, at this point, is approproiate.

  5. Jeffrey Bruce Gold

    Pro

    Contributor Level 19

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    Answered . It depends who the beneficiaries are in the will.

    If you'd like to discuss, please feel free to call. Jeff Gold Gold, Benes, LLP 1854 Bellmore Ave Bellmore,... more
  6. Larry Van Roberts

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

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    Answered . Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit is determined by Alabama statute. As executrix, you most likely can file a wrongful death suit but cannot receive the benefits for yourself. You could receive compensation and expenses for performing your duties as executrix, but your ex-husbands siblings would receive the proceeds of a lawsuit.

    This response is given solely as a general response to the question and does not create an attorney / client... more

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