Does Slayer Statute Cover Insane Killer?

Professor Beyer at the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog poses this question after posting about Richard O’Neal who killed killed his mother. “He pleaded not guilty by reason on insanity and was committed to a West Virginia mental health facility.”

The issue now being addressed is whether O’Neal may still inherit from his mother. The applicable slayer statute disqualifies someone who is “convicted of feloniously killing” the person from whom the person is attempting to inherit. But, O’Neal was not so convicted. Nonetheless, his mother’s other two children claim that he should not profit from his wrongful act.

Professor Beyer links to a story here at On.Point Legal News, May 15, 2007.

Thanks again Professor Beyer!

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