Wedding Woes

Send a group text and then silence it.

Dear Prudence,

My husband passed away very recently. We were a common-law couple for 15 years. He left his daughter the beneficiary of his life insurance, which I knew about. She’s 32 and she had disappointed him by breaking his trust and made her leave our home. We spent 90 days in the ICU unit waiting for a double lung transplant but he was too sick to make the cut. I’m broken now. I knew about the insurance and had no ill wishes about it. But how do tell her and the rest of his family to leave me alone and let me grieve? We owned our home together, he has many adult toys in our yard that now they want. But he didn’t want them to have them. How do I keep my peace while holding onto his wishes?

—Holding My Tongue

Re: Send a group text and then silence it.

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    VarunaTTVarunaTT member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its First Answer
    So many people are misinformed about common law marriages, I wonder if she really was in one.

    But really with assets, the end result is the same, whoever had their name on the property, gets it and if it was joint, she can keep it.  If they had separate accounts, it could get pretty ugly.

    There wasn't a will in this situation?

    I think her best bet might be to cut off all contact period and let everyone figure this out through attorneys because if there's no will and assets are a mess, this is going to get messy.
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    If you both owned the home then you need to get a lawyer and review the deed, his will, and everything else but it sounds like you can ignore them. The house is (presumably) yours and I hope he had a will stipulating what should happen to his other assets. But just because the family is calling doesn’t mean you have to answer now, or ever. Get a layer, figure out who the executor of the will is, and grieve how you need to. 
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    Perhaps an UO, but it's a pet peeve of mine when unmarried people refer to their partner as husband or wife.  People can have a lot of good reasons for not getting married.  I'm also not judging the seriousness of those relationships.  It can certainly be just as if not more rock solid and long term as married people.

    However, for whatever reason they have chosen not to get married.  So it doesn't make sense and isn't accurate to call their partner husband/wife.

    But onto the much more important matter for long-term, unmarried couples.  FFS, have a will!  I suspect the LW's partner did not have a will or they wouldn't have these concerns.  I assume people who don't create a will also don't understand the intricacies of inheritance laws for common law spouses in their state.

    Assuming common law marriages even exist in their state, because it doesn't in most.  Though common law marriages are recognized in all states, if one legally existed and the couple moved (thanks Google).  
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
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