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The Laws of Intestacy

When a person dies without leaving a will, or if they leave a will which is later found to be invalid, they are said to have died intestate. This means that their estate (property and other assets) must be shared out according to the rules of intestacy.

Only married or civil partners and some other close relatives can inherit under the rules of intestacy. Unmarried partners cannot inherit under the rules of intestacy nor can anyone else who is not in the specified class of relatives.

This is why it is critical to make a will to protect your partner if you are cohabiting but not married. Contact us for more information or to arrange a consultation on making a will.

INTESTACY DISTRIBUTION LIST FROM OCTOBER 2014

Deceased dies leaving

Estate goes to:

A spouse/ civil partner and children

  1. Net estate not more than 250,000 All to spouse /civil partner if he/she survives the deceased by 28 days.
  2. Net estate over 250,000 First 250,000 plus personal possessions to spouse/ civil partner as well as half of the remaining estate with the other half going to any surviving children.

A spouse/ civil partner (but no children), and either parents, or brothers or sisters of the whole blood

All to spouse/ civil partner if he/ she survives the deceased by 28 days.

A spouse/ civil partner but no children, parents or brothers or sisters of the whole blood

All to spouse/ civil partner if he/ she survives the deceased by 28 days.

Children but no spouse/ civil partner

Children in equal shares on reaching 18.

Neither spouse/ civil partner nor children

Parents in equal shares.

No spouse/ civil partner, children or parents

Brothers and sisters of the whole blood in equal shares. If there are no brothers or sisters of the whole blood, then to brothers and sisters of the half blood in equal shares.

No spouse/ civil partner, children, parents or brothers or sisters

Grandparents in equal shares.

No spouse/ civil partner, children, parents, brothers or sisters or grandparents Uncles and aunts of the whole blood in equal shares. If there are no uncles or aunts of the whole blood, then to uncles or aunts of the half blood in equal shares.
No spouse/ civil partner or blood relatives

All of the estate goes to the Crown.