When is a gift not a gift in a Texas will?

Written by Robert Ray

Robert Ray handles inheritance disputes of all kinds. He takes cases throughout Texas.

In a recent case, the second paragraph of a will gave a piece of land to the testator‘s wife “to be hers absolutely forever.”

The third paragraph of the will gave the land to the testator‘s sons in the event of the simultaneous death of the testator and his wife or “upon the death of the survivor of us.”

The wife survived the testator, remarried and made a new will giving the land to her new husband. When the wife died, the sons contested the probate of her will on the basis that the third paragraph of the will only gave the wife the land until her death at which time it passed to the sons.

The court ruled for the beneficiaries of the wife’s will and against the sons. They said “the “Second” paragraph conveys Robert’s property to Mildred in clear and decisive language. The language of the “Third” paragraph, when read as a whole, provides for the contingency of simultaneous deaths and does not clearly and expressly limit the estate conveyed in the “Second” paragraph.” Therefore, the land belonged to the wife absolutely. 281 SW3d 457.

Copyright by Robert Ray a Texas inheritance attorney. The foregoing information is general in nature and does not apply to every fact situation. If you are concerned about inheritance laws, inheritance rights, have a family inheritance dispute, a property dispute or want information about contesting a will and need an inheritance lawyer, we can help. Please go to our main site www.texasinheritance.com and use the contact form to contact us today. We are Texas inheritance lawyers and would love to learn about your case and there is no fee for the initial consultation.

You May Also Like…



Heirship proceeding are different from will contest. If more than four years have passed, it may be difficult, but may not impossible, to gain the inheritance that someone else has that should be the heirs. This is complicated, involving heirship proceedings but there is a possibility that it can be done.

The slayer rule doesn’t always apply

The slayer rule doesn’t always apply

The slayer rule means that a person who murders another person cannot inherit from that person. Texas doesn’t have the slayer rule but there are other methods of keeping the slayer from inheriting.
In a recent article in England, the courts let the wife inherit from her husband that she murdered because he had been so abusive toward her.

Robert Ray

Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization. We handle cases all across Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

Robert Ray is a Texas attorney who handles inheritance disputes

Why Us?

Inheritance disputes involve someone who has taken advantage of the elderly. These cases are complicated and most often, but not always, involve outsiders. We represent you knowing that these inheritance disputes are private and painful family matters. We know this is a stressful time for you. We strive to obtain the quickest and best results possible so that you can get this troubling episode behind you.


Get In Touch


Lantana, Texas
In the DFW area


(214) 660-5700

Follow Us

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This