What Happens If Someone Dies Without a Will?

Failing to write a will can drastically change what might happen to your assets when you pass away. Writing a will is one of the most important steps in creating a comprehensive estate plan. Not having a legally enforceable will when you pass will cause complications. To learn more about what might happen if you pass without a will, continue reading. For assistance with your estate planning needs, do not hesitate to reach out to our experienced Maryland estate planning attorney.

What happens if I pass away without writing a will?

Passing away without writing a will means that you will not have an appointed executor to handle your assets or ensure they are distributed as you would have intended. Passing away without a will means that the court will determine whether your spouse, children, or other family members are to be appointed as your executor. Next, the process of intestate succession begins. Only spouses, registered domestic partners, and blood relatives will inherit your assets upon passing. This means that unregistered partners and friends will generally not be included.

Will my children inherit my money if I do not write a will?

When an individual does not write a will, children’s inheritances can become complex. Biological children, children, born after the parent’s death, legally adopted children, or children born outside marriage will automatically receive inheritances. However, there are many cases where this becomes complicated. This may include instances that involve foster children, children adopted by stepparents, and more.

Neglecting to establish guardianship in your will may put the custody of your minor children at risk. The courts will typically decide who should raise your child if you pass away without appointing a guardian. This is reason alone for a parent to appoint a guardian in their will so that they can find peace of mind knowing that their child will be in good hands if the situation calls for it.

If you have any further questions or concerns regarding the estate planning process and how to ensure your wishes are met when you pass, do not hesitate to reach out to our dedicated and skilled estate planning attorney at JD Katz. Our legal team understands how overwhelming and stressful this process can be. We are here to help. Give our firm a call to learn more about our services and how our team can assist you.

Contact our experienced Montgomery County, Maryland firm

The attorneys at JD Katz have years of experience compassionately guiding clients in Maryland through the estate planning and administration process. Our firm also has experience with matters of elder law, business law, tax law, and litigation. For a legal team that will put your needs first, contact JD Katz today.