My husband and I divorced last Dec. 2015 after 8 years of marriage. We still lived together as husband and wife. We divorced because we could not afford Obama Care. So I'm on Medical and he had the VA. He passed away last Sunday from a slip and fall in the bathroom. He bought a house in November 2013, I am not on the title.... His family has been informed and I am talking with them, although he had cut all ties from them years ago.
Persons entitled to sue for wrongful death are set forth in California Code of Civil Procedure section 377.60. It looks like you may have an uphill battle.
You may have rights if there is a will; you may be a beneficiary on a life insurance policy. But you don't seem to have any rights regarding any potential injury claim.
I presume the thrust of your legal concern here is the house he left which was in his name alone. His house will pass by will to those he listed as heirs, or if he died intestate (without a will) the property will pass to his lawful heirs. A divorced spouse is not an heir under law. If he provided for you in a will, the will needs to be lodged with the Court and probated.
As to the slip and fall, if this was in his house, their is no one responsible aside from the owner (your ex-husband). If this was a hotel, or he was injured in a rental, an expert would be needed to determine the cause of the fall. You may wish to look back to your Marital Settlement Agreement to determine what, if anything, was agreed to as to the house, insurance, etc. Sorry for your loss.
I am sorry for your loss. If there is no will, then your husband's estate will pass via intestacy. An ex-spouse would not be covered. However, you may perhaps have some claim, depending on how you handled property division during the divorce and whether you put any money into the house. I strongly suggest you speak with an estate lawyer to help you figure out what your rights are.
The attorneys of Lowenthal & Abrams are licensed in several states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. We handle cases involving personal injury (car accidents slip and falls, etc.,) medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, workers' compensation and social security disability. I am a medical malpractice, catastrophic accident and wrongful death attorney. I am licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, California and West Virginia. This post is not legal advice, but instead contains general educational information. Please do not act or refrain from acting based upon what you read in this post. Also please remember that this post does not form an attorney/client relationship between you and me. If you have specific legal questions, you should contact an attorney in your state for assistance.
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