Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

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

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Article: Posthumous Rights of Deceased Individuals in Legal Perspective

Institute of Legal Research and Policy recently published, Posthumous Rights of Deceased Individuals in Legal Perspective, 2024. Provided below is an Abstract:

In life, individuals have rights and responsibilities from birth to death. After death, they lose legal personhood and become possessions, with concerns extending to their body, reputation, and estate. While ownership of property ends, the law recognizes three posthumous rights: dignified burial or cremation, execution of the will, and preservation of reputation. Criminal law prohibits desecration of the body. Despite not being legal persons, the legal system respects their testamentary wishes, allowing the establishment of trusts for graveyard upkeep. However, individuals can't permanently allocate estate parts for personal grave maintenance. Lifetime bequests of body parts are restricted, but eye donation is legally permissible.


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