What to Do When Someone Dies Without a Will

A will is a plain, affordable legal document that lays out the final desires of someone. A will is particularly relevant if an older adult wants to donate assets to their unmarried wife, close relatives, or organizations. Anything else, the court will determine what applies to their assets – and specific individuals or organizations will be left out regardless of new regulations. If someone dies without making a will, they are said to have died ‘intestate.

If this occurs, the law rules out who will proceed with the dead’s matters or who should inherit their assets (property, individual possessions, and money).  This article answers all questions in detail. Keep reading to find out more:

What Happens If Someone Dies Without A Will?

If someone you love ( be it your family members or loved ones) dies unexpectedly without a Will, it implies he/ she dies intestate. Someone can die intestate if:

  • They have not made a Will and have officially registered how they wish their properties to be partitioned;
  • They have unintentionally withdrawn their Will by marrying after they have formed the Will;
  • They cannot make the Will;
  • They have forgotten the Will, and there is no duplicate copy too;
  • Or all the recipients of the Will already have passed away.

What Happens When Someone Doesn’t Have A Will?

When someone dies without a will, it’s considered an “intestate” dying. When it happens, neither of the future descendants has anything to say on who receives the wealth (the assets and property). When there is no will, the estate eventually goes to the Probate. Probate is a legal method wherein the court implements state law to determine who acquires what. Probate can last from a few weeks to a few years, based on how complex the estate is. Legal payments are charged out of the estate, which is often costly.

Setting up an estate usually comprises the following steps:

  • Appoint yourself as the trustee or personal representative of the estate.
  • Identify, register, and collect the belongings of the deceased.
  • Fund the unpaid debts and taxes of the deceased
  • Allocate the remaining properties to relatives, descendants, or beneficiaries;
  • Wrap up or leave the estate

How Do You Settle An Estate Without A Will?

Source: Pexels

If there is no will and you wish to handle your deceased person’s estate, you can employ a probate attorney to guide you manage the probate codes and the county probate legal process. These are all the basic steps:

  • Have a copy of the death certificate of the deceased
  • File a petition for trial before the deceased county probate court
  • Visit your probate hearing.
  • Once your petition for Probate has been approved, acquire a letter of administration allowing you to act on behalf of the estate;
  • Identify, register, and compile the belongings of the deceased.
  • Pay the unpaid loans and taxes of the deceased.
  • Report to the court and demand a definitive distribution order
  • According to the order of the court, compensate yourself as the estate’s administrator and your counsel.
  • Divide the residual properties to the family, descendants, and beneficiaries through a court order.
  • Close the estate

Who Will Inherit the Deceased’s Estate?

When there is no will, there are laws to decide who will inherit the house. It is based on the individual situation of the dead.

If The Deceased Was Married or In A Civil Partnership

  • If the deceased has a property worth £250,000 or less, so all falls to the spouse
  • If the dead has an estate worth more than £250,000, the spouse or domestic partner won’t get it all. They’re going to receive:
  • Private goods, such as domestic goods and vehicles, but nothing necessary for business reasons
  • £250,000 tax-free (£450,000 when there are no children) with interest on it.
If One Child, One-Half Share of Any Residue Remaining, or If More than One Child, One-Third Share of Any Residue Remaining

The remainder of the estate would be divided into the following:

  • Kids (or, when none, grandkids) will have a fair share.
  • When there are no children and grandchildren, the surviving spouse may have a share.
  • If there are no spouse children, grandkids, then the siblings will have a share.
  • If the deceased does not have all of the above, the spouse or licensed civil partner will receive it all.
If There Is No Surviving Spouse/Civil Partners

The assets are divided as follows:

  • Remaining children in equal parts (or to their kids if they died while the dead was still alive)
  • When there are zero children, to parents
  • When there are no living parents, to siblings or their children, if they died when the dead were still alive
  • If neither of the above, then to the grandparents
  • Whether there are no grandparents to aunts or uncles
  • The entire estate to the Crown (if none are present)

Can I settle an estate FASTER with a probate lawyer?

The truth is, yes, if you work with an accomplished probate lawyer, the typical time to resolve the estate is around 9 to 24 months, based on the size of the estate. Some limited estates can be settled more quickly.

Can You Settle An Estate Without Probate?

If the deceased formed a trust and financed all the properties in the trust, then the probate court will be stopped. If the estate valuation is less than $150,000 and the estate doesn’t even own real estate, such as a home or apartment, then it can be stopped by using the Small Estate Affidavit.

The steps involved in the settlement of the estate can be challenging. However, with the help and legal advice of an accomplished lawyer, analysis, and the tips listed above, you can do this seamlessly and smoothly.

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