wife dies and mother inlaw is beneficiary on insurance

blue_fastbackApril 2, 2011

My wife just passed away and now I am left alone to raise our two adopted 7 year old boys. We were together for 13 years but only married for 2. I recently found out that my wife never changed over her life insurance policy or her IRA,s into my name and still had her mom as beneficiary. When I asked her about this she said her dauhter wanted her to have the money and she would set up a trust and give some money to our kids. I feel really cheated. I believe the majority of this money should go to me and my kids so I can provide a better life for us. Setting up a trust so the kids can have this money when they are 18 is good for college does me no good in raising them. This was a $500,000 policy. I informed my mother inlaw that after me and my wife got married that I took out a life insurance policy on myself and had my wife as benificiary so her and the kids would be set. The mother inlaw does not plan on giving me a dime. She said I will now get Social Security for my kids so I should be fine. What should I do?

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Worth a conversation with a lawyer, but I'll bet you'll find you're screwed. With named beneficiary (as opposed to merely "estate") neither of these would pass through via will/estate -- by which you would have at least some entitlement.

There may be loopholes that I'm unaware of. That's what you want to find out.

Otherwise you're stuck with making nice with MiL and hoping she likes the kids. If she is, indeed, setting up trust I think that indicates some good intentions. She's certainly not obligated to do that, either.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 11:04AM
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If you and/or the kids were not specifically excluded in the will, depending on state law, you may have a valid claim. See an atty. ASAP.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 12:49PM
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That was my point. Insurance and IRA proceeds from contract with named beneficiary do not pass via will -- not governed by whatever will may say.

Could be wrong. Yes to the attorney consultation.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 1:22PM
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Blue, On my IRA owners form, You have to check a box on spousal consent..1. I am married..I understand that if I designate a primary beneficiary other than my spouse, my spouse must consent by signing below 2. I am NOT married..I understand that if I marry in the future, I must complete a New Designation of Beneficiary form, which includes the spousal consent document....Did you ever sign this form? Check into that and an attorney for sure....The language of this would lead me to believe you may have a claim on the IRA funds....Good luck

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 3:48PM
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I'm looking at a Vanguard IRA application from 1996 that I filled out and signed. Does have beneficiary and secondary beneficiary. Says nothing about about spouse.

I'm not an expert. Repeat....see an attorney. Find out what your particular deal is.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 8:14PM
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Um 1996 and 2011...BIG difference prob...Like I said , call your atty.....

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 9:13PM
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Yo, dotz.....yes.

Anybody out there who doesn't think this guy should consult an attorney?

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 9:30PM
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I second the legal advice...sorry about your loss.

All the best to you and the boys.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 10:01PM
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As far as the IRA,s, she had these long before we were married so I dont think I can touch those. As far as the trust for the kids, I think it is a good idea but it does not help me raise these kids. I could really use this money. I feel like this is just so wrong of her. Its almost like she does not trust me or have any respect for me. I know originaly, when my wife first got this policy, She has providing financial support to her mother to help raise a relatives daughter. That was many years ago and I guess she still feels she should have the money. I got a feeling that this money will tear the family apart.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 6:54AM
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If she contributed to the IRA during the marriage, you may be able to claim equitable interest in a portion of it notwithstanding beneficiary designation.

That may be the case with the insurance policy, too.

May be said equitable ownership due to community funds being used for deposit/purchase/premium-payment.

I don't know.

See an attorney.

If you press this with MiL, it will, indeed, tear the family apart. She's got it and you don't. However, if she's talking nice about trusts for the kids, that is significant. Don't pee in the punch bowl. It's not all bad.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 9:23AM
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The poor guy is screwed, there is no way to contest a named insurance benificery, especially if the policy has been inforce for awhile. Next I,ll bet dollars to doughnuts the money is where he could,nt get if even if a court would award it. However A similair thing happened to a friend of mine, only in this case it was an aunt, my friend hired lawyers but never got a dime.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2011 at 3:03AM
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I disagree. Consult with an attorney.

Your marital status at the time she passed may be relevant.

Definitely see an attorney. ASAP.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2011 at 8:15PM
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Martial status has no bearing on whom one choses to leave insurance policy benefits, unless it can be proved the person was not of sound mind and was unduly infuenced, any legal action is a waste of time. However, consult an attorney, make sure you go to a reputable one. My friend spent considerable money in a similair situation , ended up not getting a dime, the Judge dismissed case and admonished the attorney for filing such.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2011 at 3:50AM
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Don't want to start anything, but could there have been a reason your wife didn't change beneficiary?

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 8:51PM
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