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Perkins v. Iglehart

Maryland Court of Appeals
39 A.2d 672 (1944)


Facts

Lucy Dun’s will left her residuary estate in trust to her son, William Rucker, for life. The will provided that upon Rucker’s death, one-third of the estate would go to Rucker’s widow. The will provided further that upon the widow’s death or remarriage, the widow’s one-third interest would go to Rucker’s child(ren) and their descendants. At the time Dun executed the will, Rucker was engaged to Sally Woods. Rucker married Woods 21 days after the will’s execution. Woods was living at the time of Dun’s death but died before Rucker. After Woods’s death, Rucker remarried, and his second wife also predeceased him. The trustee (plaintiff) filed a petition in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County, seeking a construction of the will. W. Allan Perkins and George Pausch (defendants), the executors of the Rucker estate, claimed that the will’s disposition of one-third of the estate after the widow’s death violated the rule against perpetuities. The appellants argued that by the word “widow,” Dun clearly meant Woods. The court ruled in favor of Rucker’s executors, finding a partial intestacy with respect to this one-third of Dun’s estate. The appellants appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Marbury, C.J.)

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