Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Can a Divorce Filing Prevent a Wife from Receiving a Widow's Allowance?

Post nuptial agreementThe Georgia Court of Appeals is helping to decide whether a post-nuptial agreement will defeat a wife’s claim for a “widow’s allowance” because her husband filed for divorce only hours before he died. Although the divorce filing died with him, the filing triggered the release clause of the post-nuptial agreement’s divorce provision, which could mean that the wife waived her right to support from his estate. Additionally, the provisions for support and property division were made null at his death, so the question is whether the wife has the right to file a “further claim,” according to the agreement. Because the wife was unaware that she may have signed away her right to a widow’s allowance, the court of appeals remanded the case back to the trial court for further findings.

See Julianne Tobin Wojay, Dead Man’s Wife, Son Clash over Divorce, Bloomberg BNA, April 4, 2017.

Special thanks to Naomi Cahn (Harold H. Greene Professor of Law, George Washington University School of Law) for bringing this article to my attention.


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