Husband and Wife have will leaving everything to each other. No children together or separately, Wife dies, husband plans on making new will to include his sister. wife's sister and nieces on wife's sign. He is still distraught from death of wife of 42 years. If he passes before making these changes, since his beneficiary, (his deceased wife) cannot collect, who gets the estate if he dies before making a new will? He has now named the wife's nieces as beneficiary of his life insurance. Stocks the wife owned before her death listed him as first beneficiary and her only sibling, her sister as second. Neither husband or wife have any living parents. The wife has only one sibling, the sister. The husband has 4 living sisters. What happens if he dies before updating his will. They live in GA.
If his will provides no alternate beneficiary to his wife, his estate (assets in his name only with no beneficiary named other than wife) will pass intestate (meaning as if he had no will). That would distribute it to his heirs at law which would be his surviving parents or parent, if any and if none, to his siblings or their children surviving. Those assets of his wife on which he was named a beneficiary belong to him. They would pass under his estate to heirs at law.
Likely the estate will be split between the four sisters as they are his heirs at law in the case of intestacy. The life insurance policy that has the nieces listed as beneficiaries will be paid outside of probate.
You did not mention your relationship to this widower or if you have reviewed his current will. Most likely his current will names contingent beneficiaries. That should be your starting point, if you are close to this widower and are in a position to assist him with his estate planning.
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