Pasadena, CA asked in Estate Planning and Elder Law for California

Q: My mother and father are both alive but ailing. If my father passes away before my mother when is his/their will read?

I anticipate issues with my siblings over my parents' estate, specifically one of them influencing my mother to change their will to exclude me if my father predeceases her. But if the will were to be read after he passed away (if he were to pass first) at least we would know his intentions which would make it more difficult for changes to be made.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Jonathan Purcell
Jonathan Purcell
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • PETALUMA, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Most modern estate plans use a trust instead of will to transfer assets at death.

Jonathan Purcell is a California Attorney. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended nor should be construed as legal advice for any particular case or client. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney. This posting is not intended to constitute an advertisement or a solicitation.

Nina Whitehurst agrees with this answer

James Edward Berge
James Edward Berge
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • San Jose, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: A person can change their Will anytime they want during their lifetime. It really does you no good if your father reads his Will aloud before he dies. Most married couples leave everything to each other without conditions. If your mother chooses to accept an unconditional gift and chooses to disinherit you, she's certainly free to do so. Of course, you may always choose to contest her Will upon her death based on fraud, duress, undue influence, or lack of mental capacity, among other things, but that's a different question and requires clear and convincing evidence to prove your case.

Zaher Fallahi and Nina Whitehurst agree with this answer

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