1. Disposition of Common or Preferred Stock

Disposition of Common or Preferred Stock

In re Estate of Carmer, 71 N.Y.2d 781 (1988), has a sample clause:

I give and bequeath all shares of common or preferred stock of any corporation which I may own at the time of my death, in equal shares to Barbara and Orlando Scoppettone, or if only one of them shall survive me, all to such survivor.


  • In In re Estate of Carmer, the New York Court of Appeals held that this clause includes only corporate stock, not stock of a cooperative apartment. The court noted that “common or preferred stock” indicates stock of a corporation. I wonder: If the clause had just stated “all shares of stock,” would the result have been different?
  • Stocker and Rikoon on Drawing Wills and Trusts § 2:1.6 Cooperative Apartments (2010) gives excellent advice on drafting such a clause: “Any broad legacy of stock should specifically include or exclude stock of cooperative apartments, and it is usually advisable to dispose separately and specifically of all residences, of whatever type.”