Lincoln, NE asked in Family Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Nebraska

Q: My father passed 6 yr ago married for 30 plus yrs she has been placed in a nursing home house was sold and her children

Took the money from it her care has been taken care of financially before selling the house. Am I entitled to anything

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: When a married person dies in Nebraska, the surviving spouse is typically entitled to an elective share of the estate (either 1/3 or 1/2 depending on if there are children). This applies even if the deceased spouse left a will giving everything to other beneficiaries.

The proceeds from the sale of a marital home are generally considered part of the estate. If your father left everything only to you and your siblings, excluding your mother, she may have grounds to claim her elective share of the estate.

On the other hand, if assets were properly transferred prior to your father's death (like into a trust), those assets may not be part of the estate.

Gifts given while both spouses are alive are generally not subject to the elective share. So if your father gifted money to you and your siblings before he passed, your mother may not have a claim.

If your mother's care was paid for from assets that were rightfully hers (like a trust in her name), you may not have a claim to those funds. Her children would be the natural beneficiaries of her assets.

The best thing to do would be to consult a local probate attorney to review the specifics. They can advise you on any potential rights and claims you and your mother may have in this situation. Every estate is unique, so get professional guidance for your particular case.

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