Primary tabs

Dower is an antiquated term that referred to the way in which a widow would inherit property of her husband upon his passing intestate. Normally, the wife would receive a life estate of one-third to one-half the husband’s property. Curtesy referred to the separate rights of the husband, but now the rights of the wife and husband are the same in the U.S. For more information on dower and curtesy, click here

[Last updated in June of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]