If this is a hypothetical question - that is the insured is alive - then you should get it CLARIFIED and properly name the beneficiary in the mannner the insured wants his estate handled.
If not, please send a copy of the beneficiary page so we can see exactly what was written. The proceeds most likely would be paid to son as beneficiary.
If the estate is listed as the beneficiary of the policy, the executor is bound to follow the wishes of the deceased, in which case the proceeds would go to the "residuary legatee" if no other claim is made on it in the will. If the insurance policy names your brother's wife as the beneficiary, then it goes directly to her and is not part of the estate; in fact, if the beneficiary is not the estate, it should go directly to the beneficiary in any event.
Yes. Insurance proceeds, unless the beneficiary is the estate, are payable directly to the person who is named as the beneficiary beneficiary. As such, the policy proceeds pass "outside" of the estate and do not become a part of it. If the same person who is the named beneficiary of the policy is also the executor of the estate, he/she is required to carry out the directives of the Will. This includes paying legal debts of the deceased, ensuring protection of the value of the assets of the estate, and distributing the assets as directed in the Will.
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