Sometimes you forget to update the nominee for your investments and savings. But, is the family supposed to assume who is the rightful owner or go by who’s name is in there?
A user asked, Am I wrong for keeping my brother’s life insurance? We want to hear from you.
The Original Poster (OP), 40M, lost his brother, 42M “Jay,” in a car accident a few months ago. Growing up, OP’s brother was the golden child. He got an entire ride to a prestigious college, while OP had to pay his way and eventually drop out.
OP’s brother went on to grad school, but OP got married and settled down with his wife, 42F, “Brittany,” early on.
OP and his wife have had financial struggles, which caused us not to be able to start a family. They live paycheck to paycheck in a one-bedroom apartment.
What About OP’s Brother?
Jay (OP’s brother) always made good money but wasn’t lucky in love. He was very picky, and while he had some longer 1-2 year relationships, he was looking for perfection before getting married.
He finally married his wife, 40F, Mary, in 2019. She also made good money, like Jay. She also had two children from a previous relationship, now 18 and 19. One is in college, and the other will be starting next year. She and Jay also had twin girls about a year ago.
They Both Worked
Mary and Jay both worked and have a nanny they share with a neighbor for their girls. When they got pregnant, she sold her house where they were living, and he sold the condo that he had been renting out, and they bought a larger family home together. All this is to say money is not a problem for them.
What Happened After The Accident?
As OP said, Jay passed away recently in a car accident, and Mary discovered that OP was the beneficiary of his 401(k) and life insurance policy through his employer.
The life insurance is 150k, but the 401k is much more substantial. He set it up that way years ago before Mary was in the picture and never changed it.
What did Mary do?
Mary begged OP to give her some money, but OP said no. She inherited his part of their house and their joint savings account, which is about 50k.
She said that she paid for his funeral, and to make it work on her income alone, she will have to sell the house, give up the nanny, put the girls in daycare, and won’t be able to help her older kids with college the way they planned.
What Did OP say?
OP told her it was not OP’s fault. If Jay wanted to change the beneficiary, he should have done that. But he didn’t, so now the money is OPs.
OP’s wife and he plan to use the money to buy a home and finally start a family. Mary says her husband’s money should go to his children, but she doesn’t see that OP is using the money to have his children as more important.
What Do Parents Think?
Their parents think OP is a jerk because the money should go to Jay’s kids. OP offered to take 50k and put it in trust for the girl’s education. But they said Mary needs the money now.
They said the life insurance would pay off their mortgage and the boy’s college and put money away for the girl’s future, and her income would cover the rest so they wouldn’t have to move. But what about my family?
What Do You Think?
Was it right for OP to keep the money? Was it inappropriate for Mary to go ask for it? What do you think?
Here is what others have to say:
Jay Would Have Wanted The Money To Go To His Family
“You are a jerk, yeah. Your life is terrible but there is no world in which your brother would not have wanted to take care of his wife and their children.
You’re exploiting a lapse of attention on his part to profit from his death. That’s just gross as hell.”
“YTA OP, you were jealous and bitter towards your brother in life. Don’t be that same way towards him in death. It will rot you from the inside and ruin anything good in your life that money touches.”
Living vs Not Born
“YTA, your hypothetical and non-existent children and house do not take precedent over his very real widow, children, and post-mortem finances.”
You Just Hit A Lottery
“YTA- You just hit the lottery off your brother’s death and didn’t even pay for his funeral. You know you’re a jerk, and hopefully, you can recover and do the right thing.”
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This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.