401. Share of surviving spouse.
The surviving spouse of a decedent shall receive out of the decedent's
personal estate, not lawfully disposed of by the decedent's last will, all
the articles of wearing apparel and ornament, the wearing apparel of the
decedent, and such other part of the personal estate of the decedent as the
probate court assigns to such surviving spouse, according to his or her
circumstances and the estate and degree of the decedent, which shall not be
less than a third, after the payment of the debts, funeral charges and
expenses of administration.
402. Waiver of will by surviving spouse.
The same allowance shall be made when the surviving spouse waives the
provision made for him or her in the will of the decedent, except in case
the decedent dies without issue, when the surviving spouse may take estate
as is provided in like cases of intestate estates, or, when the widow waives
the jointure or pecuniary provision made for her in lieu of her interest
provided by section 461 of this title, or, when either spouse waives the
provisions of the law in case the decedent dies without issue, and shall be
in lieu of his or her claim to the personal estate. If the widow was not the
first wife of the decedent, and he does not leave issue by her, and an
agreement was entered into between them previous to their marriage, this
provision shall be subject to the exception in relation to the allowance of
such third interest to the widow in such case.
461. Interest of widow in real estate.
A widow shall be entitled in fee to one-third in value of all the real
estate of which her husband died seised, and if such husband left surviving
him only one heir and such heir is the issue of the widow or the heir by
adoption of both the widow and husband, she shall be entitled to half in
value of such real estate in fee, unless she is barred as provided in this
chapter. All provisions of this chapter relating to the widow's third
interest in her husband's real estate shall apply in the same manner to her
half interest when she shall be entitled thereto under the provisions of
474. Husband's interest in lieu of curtesy.
A widower shall be entitled in fee to one-third in value of all the real
estate of which his wife died seised. If the wife left surviving her only
one heir and such heir is the issue of the husband or the heir by adoption
of both the wife and husband, he shall be entitled to half in value of such
real estate in fee, and his interest may be assigned and set out to him in
the same manner as is provided for the severance of the interest of the
widow in the real estate of her deceased husband. The husband may be barred
of such third or half, as the case may be, when he is entitled to and takes
the provision made for him in section 551 of this title, or accepts the
provision made for him by the last will and testament of his wife.
551. General rules of descent.
The real and personal estate of a decedent, not devised nor bequeathed and
not otherwise appropriated and distributed in pursuance of law, shall
descend in the following manner:
(1) In equal shares to the children of such decedent or the legal
representatives of deceased children;
(2) If the decedent is married and leaves no issue and the surviving
spouse does not elect to take a third in value of the real estate of which
the decedent dies seised in his or her own right, or waives the provisions
of the will of such decedent, such spouse shall be entitled to the whole of
the decedent's estate forever, if it does not exceed $25,000.00, but if it
exceeds that sum, then such spouse shall be entitled to $25,000.00 and half
the remainder. The remainder of such estate shall descend as the whole would
if such spouse did not survive. If the decedent has no kindred who may
inherit the estate, such spouse shall be entitled to the whole of such
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