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What Happens if I Die Without a Will?

Posted by William Pigg | Aug 26, 2019 | 0 Comments

If you die "intestate" (without a will), Texas law dictates who gets your stuff.
 

If you die with:

Here's what happens:

  • children but no spouse
  • children inherit everything
  • spouse but no children, parents, or siblings
  • spouse inherits everything
  • parents but no children, spouse, or siblings
  • parents inherit everything
  • siblings but no children, spouse, or parents
  • siblings inherit everything
  • a spouse and children who are also the children of your spouse
  • spouse inherits all of your community property, plus 1/3 of your separate personal property and the right to use your real estate for life
  • children inherit everything else
  • a spouse and children who are not the children of your spouse
  • spouse keeps 1/2 of the community property, 1/3 of your separate personal property, and the right to use your real estate for life
  • children inherit everything else, including your 1/2 interest in the community property
  • a spouse and parents
  • spouse inherits all of your community property, all of your separate personal property, and 1/2 of your separate real estate
  • parents inherit everything else
  • one parent and siblings but no spouse
  • parent inherits 1/2 of your separate property
  • siblings equally share remaining 1/2 of your separate property
  • a spouse and siblings, but no parents
  • spouse inherits all of your community property, all of your separate personal property, and 1/2 of your separate real estate
  • siblings inherit everything else
 
 
What's the takeaway?  MAKE A WILL UNLESS YOU WANT THE STATE OF TEXAS TO DECIDE WHO GETS YOUR STUFF!
 
Be a sport.  It is not that expensive to get an attorney who is experienced with wills, trusts and estates to draft a will for you.  Doing so will save your loved ones a ton of headaches after you pass.
 
And remember:  "If it's not written down, it never happened."
 

About the Author

William Pigg

William A. “Bert” Pigg received his J.D. from Tulane University School of Law in 1995 and his B.A. summa cum laude from Fordham University in 1992. Licensed in Texas and Louisiana, Mr. Pigg practiced law with a firm in New Orleans until Hurricane Katrina, after which he became a solo practitioner...

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