Dix v. Dix
A spouse who requests a distribution pursuant to the spousal election statute is required to file the request within 150 days of the appointment of the first fiduciary, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §45a-436. On Feb. 19, 2001, the decedent, Dennis Dix, signed a will that left the "majority of my possessions" to his children, the defendants, Dena and Thomas Dix, and that left $5 to his spouse, the plaintiff, Kathleen Dix. The decedent alleged in his will that his spouse "abandoned" the decedent. Dennis Dix passed away. In March 2011, the Probate Court admitted his 2001 will to probate and interpreted his will to find that the decedent bequeathed his estate to his children. Kathleen Dix appealed to the Superior Court, pursuant to C.G.S. §45a-186, and asked that the court find that the 2001 will was not valid and that the court distribute Dennis Dix’s estate pursuant to the laws of intestacy. Alternatively, Kathleen Dix requested a distribution pursuant to the spousal election statute. The defendant children filed a special defense that Kathleen Dix failed to file a claim for spousal election timely, within 150 days, pursuant to C.G.S. §45a-436. The statute provides, "The surviving spouse . . . shall, not later than one hundred fifty days from the date of the appointment of the first fiduciary . . . file a notice . . . of his or her intention to take the statutory share with the court of probate." The defendant children did not file a request to revise, to require that Kathleen Dix plead her claims in individual counts. The plaintiff’s cause of action, as pled, is "far broader," wrote the court, than a mere claim for spousal election. The court granted Kathleen Dix’s motion to strike the special defense that alleged that Kathleen did not file a claim for spousal election timely, within 150 days of the appointment of the first fiduciary.