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What Will Your Children Inherit If You Die Without a Will?

Posted by Chris Peterson | Mar 14, 2013 | 0 Comments

What Will Your Children Inherit If You Die Without a Will?

iStock_children on beachUntil someone discovers the Fountain of Youth and offers its waters up for sale, we will continue to age until we inevitably pass on. When you are gone, your worldly possessions will need to be distributed. People typically believe a surviving husband or wife will get their property, and if there is no surviving spouse, then the children will inherit everything.

That's not necessarily the way your estate will be divided if you die without a will in Texas. Children can complicate an intestate property division significantly. Before passing everything to your spouse, Texas law considers whether all of your children are the children of your surviving spouse. If all of your children are also your spouse's children, then your spouse will in fact inherit your estate if you die without a will.

If all of your children are not also your spouse's children, then your estate will be divided between your children and your spouse. Your spouse will receive half and your children will divide the other half of your property. Your step-children will not inherit anything from you if you die without a will in Texas.

Adopted children are treated the same as natural born children under the Texas Probate Code. An illegitimate child (born out of wedlock) can inherit from his or her mother's estate, but unless certain conditions apply, he or she cannot inherit from a natural father who dies without a will.

If you need help constructing a comprehensive estate plan to make sure your wishes are carried out when you're gone, contact an experienced Bryan, Texas estate planning attorney at the Peterson Law Group. To schedule a consultation, call us today at 979-703-7014.

About the Author

Chris Peterson

Founding Attorney Chris Peterson is the owner of Peterson Law Group. He practices primarily in the areas of wills, trusts and estate planning; probate and trust administration; elder law; and business law. In addition to the law practice, Chris is involved in Aggieland Title Company and Brazos 1...

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