Women and Wills: An Empirical Analysis of the Married Women's Property Act and Its Remarkable Resonance Today
Tuesday, August 13, 2019
12:30-1:30 pm ET
Speakers: Kristine S. Knaplund, Professor of Law, Pepperdine University School of Law
"By 1900, Missouri had a quarter century’s experience with its version of the Married Women’s Property Act, enacted in 1875 to reverse the common law and decree that personal property acquired by a married woman was her own; in 1889 a similar statute gave her control of her real property. Had enough time passed for her to accumulate enough wealth to execute a will? If she did, would she leave her property to her husband, or to others? Was her will more likely to be challenged than a man’s? This webinar will discuss a recent study that examined every probate file from 1900 St Louis--805 files in all--to look into these questions and more to identify the real impact of the Married Women's Property Act reform and understand the lessons from this empirical research for property rights and wills today."