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My husband is a beneficiary of his grandmother's estate. He recently died and I need to know if I have rights as his spouse.

Ashland, OR |
Filed under: Intestacy and probate

He is named to receive an equal portion from the sale of her house. I was told it was drawn up according to California law. We live in Oregon and would like to know if I have legal claim.

Attorney Answers 4


  1. Best answer

    All the other answers are correct. You will have to see what your husband's grandmother's estate plan stated specifically, as well as the order of who preceded whom in passing. Many times, an estate plan specifically states that nothing is to pass to spouses, but only to children of biological family members. Here, in the best case scenario, your husband (sorry for your loss) passed after his grandmother. Her estate plan was open such that her estate assets pass down to each grandchild or their estate without restriction. Then, under Oregon law, if all of your children are both yours and your husband's biologically, you get 100% of the assets that pass into your husband's estate. The law assumes that your children will inherit from you, the surviving spouse. However, if your children are blended, meaning some are his, some are yours, some may be both of yours, then you only get 50% and the remaining 50% is divided between his children and your mutual children in equal shares. If there is an attorney in CA handling the estate matters there, he or she will assist you with obtaining the assets and will know of any restrictions Grandmother placed upon them. You will not likely need an attorney unless you need to probate any of your husband's assets at this time.

    THIS IS NOT A CONFIDENTIAL FORUM. PLEASE DO NOT PROVIDE CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION BECAUSE THERE IS NO ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE PROTECTION. My statement is only a matter of my opinion and does not go to the merits of your case. Seek advice from an attorney in your local area if you have confidential or case specific questions or concerns. No Attorney-Client relationship is established between myself and any other party by communication through Avvo.com until both parties have signed a Retainer Agreement and any necessary fees have been paid to my firm. I am licensed to practice law in the State of Oregon and the Federal District Court for the State of Oregon. If you are in Oregon I am happy to help you if I am able or otherwise will find you someone who can.


  2. Very sorry for your loss. I assume your husband died after his grandmother.
    The grandmother's estate would go to your husbands estate.
    Your husbands estate would be controlled by his will or by state statutes.
    You will have spousal rights as a spouse unless you signed a pre-marital agreement.

    The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.


  3. If the grandmother was a resident of California, then CA law would apply to her estate. If she lived in Oregon, then Oregon law would apply. I believe that you would take your husband's share, unless the trust had some terms that stated otherwise. Because your husband survived his grandmother, his share would normally be vested, and it would pass through HIS estate. Oregon law would appear to apply to THAT. You MAY need a lawyer to help you sort this out.

    James Frederick

    ***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ***************************************** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state. I hope you our answer helpful!


  4. It would depend on who died first and the specific language in any Will or trust.

    If no Will or Trust is present, then if your husband died before his grandmother, then he would receive nothing, and then you would receive nothing.

    If he died after the grandmother passed; then he would be entitled to his share, and then his share would be distributed in accordance with his Will or by intestate succession (meaning you get some of it)

    Matthew Johnson phone# 206.747.0313 is licensed in the State of Washington and performs bankruptcy, short sale negotiations, and estate planning in Whatcom, Skagit, Snohomish, King and Pierce counties. The response does not constitute specific legal advice, which would require a full inquiry by the attorney into the complete background of the facts and circumstances surrounding this matter; rather, it is intended to be general legal information based on the limited information provided by the inquirer; it This response also does not constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship, which can only be established after a conflict of interest evaluation is completed, your case is accepted, and a fee agreement is signed. Johnson Legal Group, PLLC

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