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What Happens If You Die Without a Will In Texas?

Posted on in Estate Planning and Probate

Wilson County Probate LawyerPlanning for the future is an essential aspect of caring for your family members and other loved ones, and this includes writing a will. Your will describes how your possessions are distributed to beneficiaries and serves as a notice of your final wishes. In this blog, we will discuss what happens if an individual passes away without a will, known as dying intestate. Texas law specifically describes how assets are distributed in the event that a person passes away before he or she creates a will. Read on to learn more.

Distribution Of Assets If a Person Dies Intestate

If you do not create a last will and testament, you give up the right to decide how your property is distributed to family members upon your death. Instead, state laws dictate how assets will be distributed. Your relationship with surviving family members largely determines intestate succession in Texas.

For example, if you die and have a surviving spouse but no children, the spouse inherits your property. If you have children but no living spouse, parents, or siblings, the children inherit everything. If you do not have a spouse or children, your parents, or siblings may inherit your property.

Texas intestate law also distinguishes between community property and separate property. Community property is property you obtained during the marriage. It may include cash, bank account balances, real estate properties, investment income, stocks, and personal property. On the other hand, separate property is the property you obtained before you got married. Separate property also includes any property you received through an inheritance or gift, regardless of when the property was acquired.

If you have a surviving spouse and children, your spouse inherits all your community property as well as 1/3 of your separate property. Your children inherit everything else.

If you have a surviving spouse and children from a previous relationship, your spouse keeps half of the community property, 1/3 of your separate property, and your children inherit everything else.

Contact Our San Antonio Estate Planning Lawyer for Help

Creating a will is an essential responsibility that many people try to avoid. It can be uncomfortable to think about what happens after you pass away, and the estate planning process can be very confusing. Fortunately, you do not have to handle it on your own.

Whether you want to draft a will or other estate planning document or you are dealing with a probate dispute, our Bexar County estate planning attorney can help. Call Geoff Mayfield, Attorney at Law at 210-535-0870 for a free consultation.



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