The world was shocked when we heard the news that The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, passed away. While this is heartbreaking on its own, many people are unaware that she died without ever having created a will. You may think that having a will is only for the rich, someone with children, or a successful business owner, but wills are for everyone.
So, what happens if you die without having a will? It all depends on where you live and what your family looks like. So what happens exactly?
The State Controls Your Money
When you die without a will, you have died intestate. This means that the state now has control over what to do with your belongings. These types of situations vary from state to state, but most states abide by the rule that your heirs — husband, wife, children, etc.— will get an equal share of your property.
But What If I’m Single and Have No Kids?
If you are single with no children, your property will be distributed amongst your parents; if you don’t have a living parent, it will then be distributed to your siblings. If you have no children, no siblings, no partner, and no parents, your belongings and property will be evenly distributed to relatives on your mother’s and father’s side, which means that cousin you haven’t spoken to since your tenth birthday party might get the deed to your house.
What About My Long-Term Partner?
Where the real issues start to set in is with unmarried couples: if you are in a long-term relationship — unless you live in a state that abides by domestic partnership laws — your significant other will be left with nothing. The only way to inherit someone’s property if you are not family is for it to explicitly stated in a will. To be safe, it is best to check your state’s laws pertaining to a domestic partnership. If you reside in a state that recognizes a domestic partnership, it is treated as a marriage and you will inherit your partner’s property.
Make Sure Your Loved Ones Are Taken Care Of
Nobody wants to think that they’re going to die one day. Even if you’re young and in prime health, it’s better to be safe than sorry. To make sure that your loved ones are taken care of in the way that you feel is best, the smartest thing you can do is create a will. Here at Siegel Law Group, we can walk you through your will and we will be with you every step of the way to ensure that your family is taken care of in the event of an emergency. Young or old, rich or poor, it is always better to be prepared — just in case. Get your will rolling today by calling us at 561-955-8515 or contact us online here.