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  How to Leave Your Entire Estate to Your Wife in a Will

Whether or not your wife inherits your entire estate will depend on the laws of your state. If you have a will, your spouse's share will depend on what you leave.

Jasper L. Edwards

 

If someone dies without a will, their surviving spouse and children will still have some inheritance rights to their estate. However, if a valid will exists, the surviving wife or husband will have the following choices:

  • He or she can decide to take the inheritance stipulated in the will. 
  • He or she can decide to take-against the will: This simply means that they will receive a share of the estate according to the statute of statutory share. It’s not a must that they inherit the amount stated by the testator. 

How to Leave Your Entire Estate to Your Wife in a Will

Whether or not your wife inherits your entire estate will depend on the laws of your state. If you pass on without a will, your estate is divided in accordance with the state's intestacy laws. However, if you had a will, your spouse’s share will depend what you leave. Any portion of your estate that is not subject to your state’s estate laws, such as your retirement account, automatically belongs to whomever you assign as beneficiary. Property and assets that were jointly acquired during your marriage, such as your home, will automatically belong to him/her after you pass on. 

You can name your wife as the sole beneficiary of your estate in your will. Depending on which state you live in, she will be entitled to all of your property and assets. However, some states will automatically allocate a portion of your estate to your children, if you haven’t made this provision in your will. Particularly if your will was made before your children were born. In addition, if you intentionally disinherit a child your in will, he or she may contest your will after you die. If successful, they will receive a certain share. 

Even though you can leave your entire estate to your wife in a will, you must ensure that your state’s laws allow it.

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