With his wife gone, a man is left to decide how to allocate the large sum of money from her life insurance policy - whether to keep it for himself or use it to help her family rebuild their hurricane-damaged home and cover college tuition. The man is feeling an overwhelming sense of guilt and is now turning to the online community for help.
“I Miss Her So Terribly”
Sharing his grief with the Reddit community, a Reddit user opens up about the unexpected loss of his wife, which has left him shattered and struggling to cope with one of the most challenging phases of his life.
Using Life Insurance to Say Goodbye to Spouse
Following his wife's demise, he was left with a life insurance payout of $200,000, out of which he used $20,000 to pay for her funeral expenses.
However, now his wife's family is requesting a substantial share of the remaining life insurance money, a demand that he considers to be unfair and unreasonable.
Tensions Over Life Insurance Money for Hurricane Damage
The in-laws are requesting the life insurance money to fund the rebuilding of their Florida home that was destroyed in a recent hurricane.
In addition to the in-laws, his wife's brother is also asking for a share of the life insurance money to pay for his college tuition.
While he sympathizes with his wife's brother's situation he’s firm in his belief that it's not his responsibility to pay for his education.
Is It Fair?
The OP believes that his wife's family is not entitled to demand such a substantial portion of the remaining life insurance funds.
“The thing is, they didn't have insurance,” he explains, “and I don't think it's fair for me to cover their losses with the money that my wife left me.”
He maintains that his wife's intention was for him to receive the life insurance payout, and he has the freedom to choose how to spend it.
“My wife left this money to me for a reason, and it's up to me to decide how to use it,” he asserts.
Upon telling his wife's family that he couldn't give them the money they requested, they accused him of being "selfish" and uncaring about their situation.
To further pressure him into providing the money, his wife's family resorted to making him feel guilty, suggesting that he was “going against her wishes” by withholding the funds.
Prioritizing Financial Stability
Despite feeling “terrible” for his wife's family, he decided to keep the money as it is rightfully his, and he also has his own financial commitments to fulfill.
Looking ahead and taking into account his future expenses, he believes it is necessary to keep the life insurance money so that he can support himself in the long run.
Fearing the Future
He’s aware of the risks involved in giving away a substantial amount of the life insurance money and doesn’t want to put himself in a difficult position by giving away a significant amount of the life insurance money.
The life insurance money could provide a fresh start for him, enabling him to pursue new opportunities and potentially fulfill some of the goals he shared with his wife before her passing.
“This is an opportunity for me to pay off my debts and buy the dream home me and my wife always wanted,” he shares.
“Maybe I'm being selfish,” he acknowledges, “but I feel like I am not in the wrong.”
Unspoken Expectations of Life Insurance
One reason he feels he's not in the wrong is that he and his wife never had a serious conversation about what to do with the life insurance money, other than some playful remarks about buying their dream home.
Overwhelmed with guilt and uncertainty, the OP reached out to the Reddit community to seek advice on whether he was in the wrong for denying his wife's family a significant share of her life insurance money.
The online community provided a range of insightful perspectives and was largely in agreement on their stance regarding the situation.
Reddit Weighs In
The overwhelming majority of Redditors voted “NTA” and mostly agreed that the wife’s family was requesting something that it’s not theirs, with one commenter remarking, “Death and money can bring out the worst in people.”
“Shame on Them”
“If your wife wanted her parent's and brother's money SHE WOULD HAVE LEFT THEM MONEY,” one user stated.
“She did not because she wanted you to have it. You paid for [the] whole funeral...none of them did. THIS IS YOUR MONEY.”
"She Left YOU With The Money, Not Them"
One person argued that the wife's intention was for her husband to receive the money, not her family, and added, “If she wanted them to have some of it she should've put it in a will or agreement of some sort to divide the money amongst her chosen parties.”
“Do Not Give Them A Dime”
Life insurance is to cover funeral costs AND supplement the sudden loss of income of a spouse or financial supporter,” another commenter pointed out. “Meaning quite literally the 200k minus tax and funeral costs is to help you adjust to the loss of income from your wife.”
In an effort to alleviate the OP's feelings of guilt, another person made four important points:
“If you live in Florida and don't have hurricane insurance, you're not smart. It is absolutely not your responsibility to fund your brother's education. What your wife would or would not have wanted is irrelevant unless there's a will involved. It's your money to do whatever you want to do with it.”
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Sylvia Silverstone is a passionate writer who loves to share her knowledge and expertise on a wide range of topics, including beauty, life hacks, entertainment, health, news, and money. With a keen eye for detail and a talent for storytelling, Sylvia's engaging writing style keeps readers coming back for more.