My husband of 23 years recently passed away. To my dismay I have discovered that he never updated a life insurance policy during our marriage. Two years prior to our marriage (25 years ago), his policy was written to include his mother (who is now deceased) and his then girlfriend. Will this girlfriend (who is still living), that I know he cares nothing for and would not want to receive these proceeds, get the money? Most likely, yes. While you may believe (and it may be true), that your husband would not have wanted his ex-girlfriend to receive the life insurance proceeds, the document will speak for itself and be processed as it is written (absent any showing of fraud). With regard to the share that was left to his now deceased mother, her share, depending on how the policy is written may revert back to your husband’s estate and be disbursed pursuant to his will or, if he had no will, according to the State statute or it may pass down to his mother’s children (including your husband) for distribution, through her estate. Again, how it might be disbursed would depend upon whether or not the mother had a will. If she had no estate previously opened, one will have to be opened and if she did have an estate, previously, which was closed, it may have to be reopened to administer the proceeds. Lots of issues raised due to the non updating of an insurance policy. To all: review your beneficiary designations annually!
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