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NJSA 3B:3-14 Revocation of Probate and Non-Probate Transfers by Divorce or Annulment; Revival by Re-Marriage to Former Spouse

3B:3-14 Revocation of probate and non-probate transfers by divorce or annulment; revival by remarriage to former spouse.

3B:3-14. Revocation of probate and non-probate transfers by divorce or annulment; revival by remarriage to former spouse. a.Except as provided by the express terms of a governing instrument, a court order, or a contract relating to the division of the marital estate made between the divorced individuals before or after the marriage, divorce or annulment, a divorce or annulment:

(1)revokes any revocable:

(a)dispositions or appointment of property made by a divorced individual to his former spouse in a governing instrument and any disposition or appointment created by law or in a governing instrument to a relative of the divorced individuals former spouse;

(b) provision in a governing instrument conferring a general or special power of appointment on the divorced individuals former spouse, or on a relative of the divorced individuals former spouse; and 

(c)nomination in a governing instrument of a divorced individuals former spouse or a relative of the divorced individuals former spouse to serve in any fiduciary or representative capacity; and 

(2)severs the interests of the former spouses in property held by them at the time of the divorce or annulment as joint tenants with the right of survivorship or as tenants by the entireties, transforming the interests of the former spouses into tenancies in common.

In the event of a divorce or annulment, provisions of a governing instrument are given effect as if the former spouse and relatives of the former spouse disclaimed all provisions revoked by this section or, in the case of a revoked nomination in a fiduciary or representative capacity, as if the former spouse and relatives of the former spouse died immediately before the divorce or annulment. If provisions are revoked solely by this section, they are revived by the divorced individuals remarriage to the former spouse or by the revocation, suspension or nullification of the divorce or annulment. No change of circumstances other than as described in this section and in N.J.S.3B:7-1 effects a revocation or severance.

A severance under paragraph (2) of subsection a. does not affect any third-party interest in property acquired for value and in good faith reliance on an apparent title by survivorship in the survivor of the former spouse unless a writing declaring the severance has been noted, registered, filed, or recorded in records appropriate to the kind and location of the property which are relied upon, in the ordinary course of transactions involving such property, as evidence of ownership.

b.For purposes of this section: (1) "divorce or annulment" means any divorce or annulment, or other dissolution or declaration of invalidity of a marriage including a judgment of divorce from bed and board; (2) "governing instrument" means a governing instrument executed by the divorced individual before the divorce or annulment; (3) "divorced individual "includes an individual whose marriage has been annulled; and (4) "relative of the divorced individuals former spouse" means an individual who is related to the divorced individuals former spouse by blood, adoption or affinity and who, after the divorce or annulment, is not related to the divorced individual by blood, adoption or affinity.

c.This section does not affect the rights of any person who purchases property from a former spouse for value and without notice, or receives a payment or other item of property in partial or full satisfaction of a legally enforceable obligation, which the former spouse was not entitled to under this section, but the former spouse is liable for the amount of the proceeds or the value of the property to the person who is entitled to it under this section.

d.A payor or other third party making payment or transferring an item of property or other benefit according to the terms of a governing instrument affected by a divorce or annulment is not liable by reason of this section unless prior to such payment or transfer it has received at its home or principal address written notice of a claimed revocation, severance or forfeiture under this section.

L.1981, c.405, s.3B:3-14, eff. May 1, 1982; amended 2004, c.132, s.17; 2005, c.160, s.4.


Kenneth Vercammen was the Middlesex County Bar Municipal Court Attorney of the Year
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Kenneth Vercammen is the Managing Attorney at Kenneth Vercammen & Associates in Edison, NJ. He is a New Jersey trial attorney has devoted a substantial portion of his professional time to the preparation and trial of litigated matters. He has appeared in Courts throughout New Jersey each week for litigation and contested Probate hearings.

Mr. Vercammen has published over 125 legal articles in national and New Jersey publications on elder law, probate and litigation topics. He is a highly regarded lecturer on litigation issues for the American Bar Association, NJ ICLE, New Jersey State Bar Association and Middlesex County Bar Association. His articles have been published in noted publications included New Jersey Law Journal, ABA Law Practice Management Magazine, and New Jersey Lawyer.

He is chair of the Elder Law Committee of the American Bar Association General Practice Division. He is also Editor of the ABA Estate Planning Probate Committee Newsletter and also the Criminal Law Committee newsletter. Mr. Vercammen is a recipient of the NJSBA- YLD Service to the Bar Award. And past Winner "General Practice Attorney of the Year" from the NJ State Bar Association. He is a 22 year active member of the American Bar Association. He is also a member of the ABA Real Property, Probate & Trust Section.

He established the NJlaws website which includes many articles on Elder Law. Mr. Vercammen received his B.S., cum laude, from the University of Scranton and his J.D. from Widener/Delaware Law School, where he was the Case Note Editor of the Delaware Law Forum, a member of the Law Review and the winner of the Delaware Trial Competition.

RECENT SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS ON WILLS, ELDER LAW, AND PROBATE

Edison Adult School -Wills, Elder Law & Probate- 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002 [inc Edison TV], 2001, 2000,1999,1998,1997
Nuts & Bolts of Elder Law - NJ Institute for Continuing Legal Education/ NJ State Bar ICLE/NJSBA 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2000, 1999, 1996
Elder Law and Estate Planning- American Bar Association Miami 2007
Elder Law Practice, New Ethical Ideas to Improve Your Practice by Giving Clients What They Want and Need American Bar Association Hawaii 2006
South Plainfield Seniors- New Probate Law 2005, East Brunswick Seniors- New Probate Law 2005
Old Bridge AARP 2002; Guardian Angeles/ Edison 2002; St. Cecilia/ Woodbridge Seniors 2002;
East Brunswick/ Halls Corner 2002;
Linden AARP 2002
Woodbridge Adult School -Wills and Estate Administration -2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996
Woodbridge Housing 2001; Metuchen Seniors & Metuchen TV 2001; Frigidare/ Local 401 Edison 2001; Chelsea/ East Brunswick 2001, Village Court/ Edison 2001; Old Bridge Rotary 2001; Sacred Heart/ South Amboy 2001; Livingston Manor/ New Brunswick 2001; Sunrise East Brunswick 2001; Strawberry Hill/ Woodbridge 2001;
Wills and Elder Law - Metuchen Adult School 1999,1997,1996,1995,1994,1993
Clara Barton Senior Citizens- Wills & Elder Law-Edison 2002, 1995
AARP Participating Attorney in Legal Plan for NJ AARP members 1999-2005

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