When a married couple gets divorced in South Carolina there is an effect on the will. This effect on the will is that after the will is made and there is a divorce, annulment, or a valid proceeding terminating marital property rights or equitable division, then the former spouse named in the will be considered to have predeceased the spouse making the will. Predeceased means that the spouse will be considered to have already died for the purposes of the will and whatever was given to the spouse under the will goes to the next alternative beneficiary or moves to the residuary portion of the will.
If the divorced couple gets remarried later on and the will has not been revoked or modified, then the spouse will regain their rights to inherit under the will. There must be a divorce to have an effect on the will. A decree for separate support and maintenance is often a precursor for divorce in South Carolina, but does not limit the spouse’s right to inherit under the will.
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