Excluding a Spouse or Child From Your Estate Plan

Can I exclude my spouse from my Estate Plan?

Most states have legal protections in place to support a spouse's rights to a portion of your estate. These laws are designed to ensure that a spouse receives support, even if not included in your estate planning documents. The extent of these protections and benefits can vary significantly by state.

For instructions for how to exclude someone from your Estate Plan, review our guide: How To Exclude Someone From Your Estate Plan

State-Specific Rule Examples

  • Estate Share: In certain states, a spouse may be entitled to claim a portion of your estate, regardless of whether they are excluded in your Estate Plan.
  • Residency Rights: Some laws allow a spouse to continue living in the primary residence, even if the property is bequeathed to another person.

Can I exclude a child from my Estate Plan?

There are many reasons for leaving a child out of your Estate Plan. Whatever your reason, you can choose to disinherit a child from your Estate Plan.

It's important to note that some states impose restrictions on disinheriting children, particularly those under a certain age. These laws may affect your ability to fully exclude a minor child from your estate.

Have more questions about exclusions?

For personalized guidance on spousal rights and to ensure your estate decisions are legally enforceable, consider incorporating Attorney Support (+$300) - available in select states- into your Estate Plan to consult with a qualified, state-licensed attorney.



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