Thursday, February 26, 2015
It is unknown exactly what Mr. King intended to happen to his real property when he died as his will seemingly left it in fee simple to both his wife and then to his son when his wife died. After Mrs. King's death, the double gift by Mr. King's will created a legal battle between the executors of Mrs. King's estate and Mr. King's grandchildren.
In Thompson v. Blackwell, the bequests to Mrs. King was interpreted as a life estate by the Georgia Supreme Court, which reasoned that the contradictory language and the order of the gifts showed that Mr. King intended that his wife receive only a life estate in the property.
See Luke Lantta, Giving the Same Property Twice in a Will, Bryan Cave Fiduciary Litigation, Feb. 25, 2015.
Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.