Court: Will disinheriting intermarried granchildren legal

(JTA) — An Illinois court ruled that a Chicago dentist’s last will and testament disinheriting his grandchildren if they marry non-Jews is legal.

The Illinois Supreme Court issued a decision in the case Thursday.

Max Feinberg died in 1986 after putting his money into trusts for his family, and leaving a will which stated that any grandchild who married non-Jews "shall be deemed to be deceased" and would not inherit anything, The Associated Press reported. His wife died after him, leaving the same provision. 

Four of the couple’s five children married non-Jews.

"Equal protection does not require that all children be treated equally… and the free exercise clause does not require a grandparent to treat grandchildren who reject his religious beliefs and customs in the same manner as he treats those who conform to his traditions," wrote Justice Rita Garman.

The decision overturned two lower court decisions.
 

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