Pre-Nup vs. Last Will and Testament

In the event that a loved one dies, there may be issues that can arise regarding inheritance, estate, or possessions. A widowed wife or husband may have questions as to which document supersedes the other. A prenuptial agreement is a contract between two people before marriage stating information regarding wealth and estate in the event of divorce or death. A last will and testament states who is the executor in case of death and what will become of your estate, wealth, and possessions as dictated by you.

Which Document Wins

A prenuptial agreement can and will supersede a last will and testament in certain situations. The reason for this is inconsistency between documents formulated before the last will was created. Whether to designate the estate to the spouse or not in a last will and testament is an issue if the terms were not specified in the prenuptial agreement. This is because a postnuptial agreement was not mutually signed by both parties agreeing to the termination of terms in the prenuptial agreement. If there has been an alteration of circumstances that have led to the agreement of different terms other than those stated in your prenuptial agreement, a postnuptial agreement must be signed. The court will determine which document holds more power and will distribute the estate in accordance.

Other Considerations

The probate court may apply state law to determine whether or not a prenuptial agreement will supersede in the event that a person did not leave a last will, or if a last will was to be determined invalid. The probate court will decide how to distribute the estate if this situation arises.

An attorney is best qualified to assist a client in matters dealing with prenuptial agreements, and last will and testaments. A death of a spouse can establish a very difficult time to come, and questions about inheritance can make the situation harder to handle.

Contact Us

For more information about legal contracts or documents, contact the probate attorneys in McAllen of Barrera, Sanchez & Assoc., P.C. at (956) 287-7555. The McAllen probate lawyers will handle your questions and case with the knowledge and expertise as well as their many years of experience.

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