The Complexities of Intestacy in Non-Traditional Families

February 4, 2015

I received a note last week that highlights the heartbreaking consequences of dying without a Will in non-traditional families. The couple had lived together for twenty-one years in a home the deceased partner had purchased before their relationship began. The deceased partner had been previously married and was survived by a child from the prior […]

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Intestacy Can Be A Nightmare In Blended Families

October 31, 2014

I got a note yesterday from a woman whose husband had died without a Will. Her husband was also survived by two children from prior relationships. She and her husband lived in a home that her husband had purchased before they were married. She asked what her rights were regarding her husband’s property and the […]

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Who Are My Heirs If I Am Single And Die Without A Will?

October 17, 2014

I explained last week that an heir is a person who will inherit your property by virtue of a state’s intestacy laws if you die without a Will. The Texas intestacy statutes are essentially a Will that the state of Texas writes for you. They are rigid and inflexible and do not take into account […]

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If You Are A Part of A Blended Family, You Need A Will

September 5, 2014

I got an email from someone this week whose husband did not have a Will. She and her husband had been married for 17 years. He had three children from a prior marriage, and they had one child together. Before they got married, he bought a house and a commercial building. During their marriage, they […]

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If You Don’t Have a Will, Texas Makes One For You

September 25, 2013

I received a phone call this week from a woman I’ll call Ellen, whose grandfather had succumbed to pancreatic cancer. His own children were unwilling to care for him while he was ill, so Ellen moved into his home and cared for him until he died. As an expression of his gratitude, Ellen’s grandfather promised […]

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Will My Wife Inherit All My
Separate Property If I Die Without A Will?

August 14, 2013

Most people may assume that if they are married and die without a Will, their surviving spouse will inherit their entire estate. This is not always the case. The way property is characterized is important in determining who inherits the property when its owner dies. Separate vs. Community Property Property is characterized as either separate […]

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