New Jersey Statutes - Title 3B Administration of Estates--decedents and Others - 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 individual's former spouse;
(b) provision in a governing instrument conferring a general or special power of appointment on the divorced individual's former spouse, or on a relative of the divorced individual's former spouse; and
(c) nomination in a governing instrument of a divorced individual's former spouse or a relative of the divorced individual's 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 individual's 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 individual's former spouse" means an individual who is related to the divorced individual's 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.
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Last modified: January 29, 2015