What Happens When There is No Will ?
If no will exists the deceased’s estate will be distributed according to the rules of intestacy which set out an order of entitlement as to who can apply and receive the deceased’s person’s estate. Currently over 70% of the population don’t have a will, so the majority of estate’s are dealt with under the Intestacy rules.
As no will exists, there will be no Executors and therefore the task of administering the estate will be undertaken by the Administrator. An order of priority exists as to who can apply for a grant of representation which is as follows:-
- Husband, wife or civil partner
- Sons or Daughters, or their children
- Sisters or Brothers
- Uncles or Aunts
To apply for the grant all applicants must be over the age of 18
How the estate will be distributed
Distribution of the estate is determined by the Administration of Estates Act 1955. Unless the estate is very small it is advisable to use a solicitor as the rules can be complex.
A brief overview of the order of entitlement is as follows:-
If there is a surviving spouse
1. If there is a surviving spouse and no children the wife gets everything.
2. If there are children, the surviving spouse gets the property, £125,000 and a life interest in half the remainder. The children get the other half immediately, but have to wait until the death of the surviving spouse before getting the outstanding half. 3. If there are no children or grandchildren but the deceased’s parents are alive, the surviving spouse gets the chattels, £200,000.00 and half the remainder. The surviving parents get half the remainder.
- If there is a surviving spouse and no children the wife gets everything.
- If there are children, the surviving spouse gets all the personal property, £250,000 and half of the remainding estate. The children get the other half.
If there is no surviving spouse
- If there is no surviving spouse but children they will share the estate equally.
- If there is no surviving spouse or issue the estate is then taken by the relatives of the deceased in the following order:-
- Parents of the deceased
- Brothers and Sisters or their issue ( of the whole blood ) and then brothers and sisters of the half blood or their issue
- Uncles and aunts of the whole blood or their issue and then uncles and aunts of the half blood or their issue
- The Crown
If you are unsure about dealing with an estate under the intestacy rules call us now on 0844 740 1637