A surviving spouse, children under 18, and children 18 or older who are physically or mentally incapacitated AND were financially supported by the deceased, in whole or in part, before his or her death, may be entitled to a reasonable monthly allowance from the deceased's estate for their support. Ex-spouses are not entitled to a family allowance; however, spouses who were in the process of divorcing may still be entitled to a family allowance. A minor child may be entitled to the allowance even if the child's mother was never married to the deceased, and even if the minor child didn't live with the deceased. To obtain an allowance, a petition must be filed with the court. How much is paid and for how long is determined by the court and will depend on the circumstances of the family. For more information on obtaining a family allowance, please contact an attorney.