Decedent had entered into a property settlement agreement (PSA) as part of a legal separation from her husband.  He survived her.  He filed a petition for probate of her estate.

Decedent’s daughter filed a counterpetition.  She argued that the husband was not an heir.   The Trial Court erred in finding that the husband was an heir. Daughter appealed.

The language of the PSA divided the parties’ property between them. The pertinent paragraph of the PSA:  “Without any collusion as to said proceeding, the parties hereto consider it to be in their best interests to settle between themselves the issues arising out of said litigation including, but not limited to, maintenance, the allocation of marital property, debts, attorney’s fees, and to forever, finally and fully settle and adjust between themselves the other rights growing out of the marital or any other relationship now or previously existing between them and to fully and finally settle any and all rights of every kind, nature and the other, including all rights and claims in and to any property of the other, of every kind, nature and description, whether real, personal, marital, non-marital, or mixed, now owned or which may hereafter be acquired by either of them.”

The language of the PSA is a release from each party of any interest in the other’s property.  The parties had intended the PSA to be a final settlement of all property claims between them as a result of their marriage.

In re Estate of Holms, 2019 IL App (2d) 190139 (December 23, 2019) Lake Co.