15 Things That Will Happen If You Die Without A Will 2021 Update : Current School News

15 Things That Will Happen If You Die Without A Will 2021 Update

Filed in Articles by on March 12, 2021



What happens if you die without a will? If you don’t have a will when you die, your money, property, and possessions will be shared out according to the law instead of your wishes. This can mean they pass to someone you hadn’t intended – or that someone you want to pass things on to ends up with nothing.

what happes if u die without a will

Here’s the bad news: dying without a will can cause big problems for your loved ones. But here’s good news: creating a will doesn’t have to be complicated. And when you do have a will, you control what happens to your estate, kids, and pets—not the courts.

So here we’ve listed a bunch of stuff that’ll happen if you don’t have a will.

What Happens If You Die Without A Will?

When you die without leaving a will, the law decides who gets what and how much. It doesn’t matter what your relationship with those people was like when you were alive. By leaving a will that says clearly who should get your property and money when you die, you can prevent unnecessary distress at an already difficult time for your family or friends.

What You Need to Know About Intestacy

Intestate isn’t a road between two states. It means dying without leaving a legal will in place. And the process your estate would go through is called intestacy. If this happens to you, the laws in the state where you live decide how your assets are given away—and who gives them away. That includes your money, real estate (unless it’s co-owned), pets, family heirlooms, and your prized butterfly collection.

What Happens If You Die Without a Will?

Until the courts decide who will distribute your assets, they will be frozen. That means no one can touch your stuff, even if you said they could have it. And even after the court names a representative, family and friends might resent the person who was chosen.

If nobody is willing to handle your estate, the courts will name a public trustee. This total stranger will distribute your assets according to the laws in your state. And that usually leaves everybody unhappy.

what happens

  1. If You’re Single

If you’re single without kids and you die without a will, your parents will likely inherit your entire estate. If you have any assets (car, condo, etc.), those items will be used to pay off any debt you have, like student loans.

  1. If You’re Married

The laws are different in every state, but if you’re married and die without a will, your estate will probably go to your spouse if you both own it. Legally, it’s called community property. If you have separate property, it would likely be split among your surviving spouse, children, siblings, and parents. Things get more confusing if you’re divorced and remarried but have children from both marriages.

  1. If You Have Children

If you have children but pass away without a will in place, the courts decide on a guardian for them. In most cases, a family member will step in to take care of your kids. The problem is, that person may be the last one you’d choose! This situation can be avoided by creating a will.

  1. All Your Money

What happens if you die without a will? Your state’s intestate succession laws will determine where your money goes if you pass away before creating a will. This requires going into probate court where the court will appoint someone as a personal representative to oversee the distribution of your belongings.

  1. Your Property & Taxes

What happens if you die without a will and you have properties? Under Federal law, your estate is taxed by 40 percent if it’s worth over $11.58 million. Anything under that amount is generally exempt from federal taxes. State taxes are an entirely different story, especially if you pass away before writing a will.

  1. If You Have A Spouse, But No Children

Your spouse inherits everything. This only applies to legally married spouses. Common-law spouses do not automatically receive anything if you die without a Will.

without a will

  1. If You Have A Spouse And Children:

Your spouse first takes a preferential share of up-to $200,000 worth of assets. Anything left over is called the residue. If anything is left over, it is divided between your spouse and your children as follows: If there is only one child, your spouse and child each receive half of the residue of the estate; if there is more than one child, your spouse receives one-third of the residue and the children share the remainder equally.

  1. If You Have Children, But No Spouse:

The children each inherit an equal portion of your estate. If any of them have died, that child’s descendants (i.e. the deceased person’s grandchildren) will inherit their share.

  1. If You Have No Spouse And No Children:

Your parents inherit your entire estate.

  1. If You Have No Spouse, No Children, And No Parents:

Your brothers and sisters (or their children if any brothers and sisters have died) divide your estate.

  1. If You Have No Brothers And Sisters:

Your nieces and nephews each inherit an equal portion of your estate.

  1. If You Have No Nieces And Nephews:

All other next of kin inherit an equal portion of your estate.

  1. If You Have No Living Next Of Kin:

If you die with no living close relatives, your whole estate will belong to the Crown or to the government. This law is called bona vacantia.

  1. No Inheritance Tax Savings

Everyone’s estate is assessed for inheritance tax upon their death. Not all estates have to pay inheritance tax as there is a value threshold (called the ‘nil-rate band’) up to which tax is charged at 0%. This is currently set at £325,000. Any of your estate’s values above this threshold will be taxed at 40%.

  1. Joint Assets and Tenants

any assets that you own jointly with someone will not pass under the intestacy rules but will pass by survivorship to the surviving joint owner. But be careful, you need to own the asset as ‘joint tenants’ and not as ‘tenants in common for survivorship to apply.

a will

Who Will Inherit If You Die Without A Will?

  • Remoter issue: grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and so on: your direct descendants in later generations than your children.
  • Per stirpes: Latin for ‘by branch’. This means that each branch of the family gets an equal share of your estate. For example, if you had three children, each of them would get a third of the total. But if one of your three children died before you, that child’s children would share their parent’s third of the estate between them.
  • Chattels: things you own, like furniture, jewelry, cars, or books.

Related Read:

How Dying Without a Will Affects Your Family

What happens if you die without a will: Dying without a will in place can create a literal family feud that would rival anything on Jerry Springer. Unfortunately, people in grief can let their emotions get the best of them, causing hard feelings all around.

By creating a will, you get to choose how your estate will be distributed and who will take care of your children. Your wishes will be respected, and your children will have the guardian you trust.

Getting started on your will doesn’t take much time. And you don’t have to take off work to go to a lawyer’s office or spend a fortune to have it done!

Dying without a will can precipitate a myriad of burdens for the deceased’s family members.

CSN Team.



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