We are a Veteran Owned Business, providing 20% discounts for Veterans, First Responders, Elementary and High School teachers. We remain open during the shutdown period, so please contact us to set up a phone or Zoom meeting. Taking care of you and your family, It's What We Do!

Skip to Content
Klenk Law

Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge?

Posted on Tue Jun 23, 2020, on Estate Planning

From Our “Ask a Question,” Mailbag: “Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge?”

Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge?

Estate Planning Lawyer, Peter Klenk

Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge?

An adult can make a valid will without notifying their wife or husband.  Not telling a spouse would be unusual, but not illegal. 

What is a Valid Will? (Hint, telling your spouse is not on the list).

There are four main requirements in a valid will:

  1. When signing the will, the testator must have had testamentary intent;
  2. At the time of signing, the testator must have testamentary capacity;
  3. The testator must have signed the will free of fraud, duress, undue influence or mistake; and
  4. The testator must execute the will following the state’s rules.

Whether married or single, these are the four elements to consider. 

For example, if George Montgomery doing his estate planning New Jersey wanted a will without telling his wife, he could do so. As long as he wished to the document to manage his assets when he died (testamentary intent), was competent at the time he signed, was under no undue pressure to make the will, and signed the will following New Jersey law, the will is valid.

For more information about what is a valid will, follow this link to my article about Estate Planning

Can my Husband Make a Power of Attorney Without my Knowledge?

Yes, your husband can name someone else as his Agent Under a Power of Attorney without telling you.  In certain circumstances, such as when one spouse has health issues, this is common. 

For example, Martha Montgomery’s husband has dementia. As part of her estate planning New Jersey review, she may have her estate planning lawyer draft a new Power of Attorney. She could name her two children as Co-Agents. These Co-Agents would have the power to manage her assets if she became ill. She would not have to tell her husband about this new Durable Power of Attorney.

Another example, Charlie Montgomery’s wife had a stroke and became bedridden. Charlie has medical issues, and could quickly need someone to speak for him should he fall ill. While his wife was incapacitated, he named his daughter his Medical Power of Attorney. The new medical power of attorney gave his daughter the right to make medical decisions for him if he became incapacitated. Charlie has no obligation to tell his wife about this new Medical Power of Attorney.

For more information, follow this link to read more about Living Wills and this link to learn more about Durable General Powers of Attorney.

In Conclusion: Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge?

I hope you found helpful this short article responding to the question, Can my Husband Make a Will Without my Knowledge.  I have also included some links for more detailed information. If you are curious about updating your Will, Power of Attorney, or Living Will, contact us and let our Estate Planning lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. 

Wills, Trusts, Probate, and Estate Litigation, It’s All We Do!

It’s What We Do!

Tags:

Estate Planning, Wills

What Our clients are saying

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Peter provided outstanding advice and preparation of a will and trusts.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Peter came highly recommended by a close friend to do our estate planning. We have been putting off for years. He is knowledgeable, professional and easy to work with.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Always professional and very responsive. Everyone on the staff that I have worked with. I look forward to continuing our relationship.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

Great firm. Great people. Happy to refer folks in need to estate planning to Peter and his team. They do great work.

Klenk Law Logo
Stars

I saw four lawyers and was told by all of them; I should just forget contesting my mother's will. I knew what happened, but it is very hard to prove undue influence. I contacted the Law Offices of Peter L. Klenk & Associates. Attorney Amanda DiChello took my case. They were very honest and upfront about what would be involved trying to prove what I knew was true. Attorney DiChello may be young but she is extremely knowledgeable and skilled. She listened and understood what I conveyed to her. She knew exactly what information to use and crafted an outstanding interrogatory and many powerful depositions. Attorney DiChello understood the various emotional feelings this case created for my family and me; she was always there for us with a kind and encouraging word. We went to trial. The amount of work which she and her Paralegal did for the trial was incredible. They both knew my case inside and out! Attorney DiChello's powerful interrogative and thinking skills produced a positive outcome. Attorney DiChello did what other seasoned lawyers said was impossible!

Let us put our expertise to work for you.

Free consultation within 24 hours.