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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008

    Default Executor vs Common Law Wife or New Wife

    My question involves marriage law for the State of: New York

    My father is 88 years old and has been living with a woman for the past 7 years (since shortly after my mom's death). I am the executor of his estate, as well as his health care proxy and I have power of attorney.
    Suddenly he is talking about marriage. Will this change my status (in other words does a spouse trump an executor or a health care proxy)?
    Also, if they do not get married, does the state of New York look at her as his common-law wife and therefore she is entitled to 1/2 of his estate?
    My Dad has a revocable trust naming me as his executor. Does this trust preclude his possible new wife from contesting anything, and if they do get married, should I push him to have a pre-nup?

    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    Default Re: Executor vs Common Law Wife or New Wife

    If you hold a power of attorney and he's mentally competent, he can revoke your status at any time. He can also revoke his revocable living trust at any time.

    New York does not recognize common law marriages (except for those validly entered into in other states that do allow common law marriages).

  3. #3

    Default Re: Executor vs Common Law Wife or New Wife

    A prenuptial agreement would be in order. Just be sure that it is drawn up by an attorney.

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