Intentional interference with expected inheritance (IIEI) was recognized as a legal claim in California about eight years ago in Beckwith v. Dahl (2012) 205 Cal.App.4th 1039. Last week, the Court of Appeal issued the first published opinion in California that affirms a judgment in favor of a plaintiff on an IIEI claim, thus providing
Stepmother vs. Stepchild, Now Playing in a California Probate Court Near You
Stepmothers are frequent characters in California trust and estate litigation, as they are in fairy tales and Disney movies. With about half of all marriages ending in divorce, there are many stepmother/stepchild relationships. Mostly they work out fine, but some go south.
After blogging on sibling conflicts as a driver of trust and estate disputes, I offer thoughts today about the litigation I see between stepmothers and stepchildren. In Family Feud parlance, my personal survey says that step-parent relationships are a close second to sibling relationships as the setting of trust and estate litigation. I’ll focus on stepmothers here, though of course stepfathers also often clash with their stepchildren.…