Witt v. Young: A debate about the community property law and the property rights of a deceased partner in a committed, intimate relationship.
By Laura Morgan, Family Lawyer
Community property law applied by analogy when evaluating the property rights of a deceased partner of a committed, intimate relationship, citing Olver v. Fowler, 161 Wash.2d 655, 168 P.3d 348 (2007). Thus, cohabitee’s action against estate of other cohabitee, who died intestate, was not an action against the other cohabitee himself, and thus nonclaim statute’s prohibition on maintenance of a claim against a decedent without appointment of personal representative and following of procedural requirements was inapplicable to action, which alleged that portion of estate’s property was cohabitee’s property, despite argument that action was the equivalent of a creditor’s claim; claim was in effect a claim for partition of property rather than a generalized claim of indebtedness.
Laura Morgan is a Family Law Consultant. Laura is available for consultation, brief writing and research on family law issues throughout the country. She can be reached through her Web site.