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fester64

Tennessee Will Laws to Exclude an Adult Child

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I'm trying to research making a simple will in Tennessee to exclude or significantly reduce one of my adult children from receiving any benefits when I pass away. I want my other two children to receive 99 or 100% of my assets to split between them. Does Tennessee law let me exclude her completely ( with a statement in the will saying that is my intention) or do I have to include her to receive some asset even if it is very, very small (e.g., 1%)? I haven't found a definitive answer as yet. Would appreciate any info you may have. Thanks

                                                  Fester64

 

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No state's law will require you to leave anything to an adult kid (unless you lived in Louisiana and the kid was under 24).  Yes, naturally, you'd want to mention in your will that you're excluding her on purpose so that she can't successfully claim later that you "forgot" to mention her.  There's no law requiring that you leave something "very, very small." 

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You may completely exclude your child or leave him/her as much or as little as you like.  Note that it's not necessary even to say expressly that you are excluding the child.  While anyone can "claim" anything, even if you were to "forget" a child, I don't know of any state that would allow for a successful challenge on that basis (contrast this with rules regarding a pretermitted child, which wouldn't be relevant in the situation described -- see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pretermitted_heir).  I strongly suggest you consult with a local estate planning attorney.

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Hi fester64,

 

As the other posters said, you are perfectly free to exclude your child from your will. However, to make sure everything goes according to plan, please consult with a local estate planning attorney. He or she will be able to draft the terms of your will so that they accurately express your final wishes. You might also want to check out FindLaw's section on wills to get more background information. Best of luck to you.

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