What Happens if You Die Without a Will?

Have you thought that you really should get your Will done, but for one reason or another haven’t got around to it, or thought there was no point bothering because everything (your assets) would go to your partner or kids anyway? Well, you could be right, but wrong at the same time when it comes to who it goes to.

Dying “intestate” (without a valid Will) is likely to cause more stress, hardship and uncertainty for your loved ones than you ever intended, as the state decides who gets what from your assets.

Read on for some common scenarios – and you if you want to have control over your asset distribution, let’s have a chat.

Some common scenarios explained

Here, we look at how the state could decide to distribute your assets if you didn’t have a Will in place, based on the number and type of dependants left behind.

  1. Partner only: Your partner receives the entire estate.
  2. Partner and children: Your partner receives your personal possessions and ⅓ of the balance, while your children split the remaining ⅔.
  3. Partner and parents: Your partner receives your personal possessions and ⅓ of the balance, while your parents receive the remaining ⅔
  4. Children only: Each of your children receives an equal split of your estate.
  5. Siblings only: Each of your siblings receives an equal split of your estate.
  6. Grandparents or aunties/uncles and no-one else: In this case, your mother’s family receive ½ of your estate (first to the parents, or to the aunties and uncles if the parents have already passed), while your father’s family gets the other ½ (first to the parents, then to the aunties and uncles).
  7. No-one: Everything goes to the Government.

Creating a Will is an important step to take

While a Will is contestable, if you have made adequate provision for those you are legally expected to provide for, the majority of your assets should be distributed as you want them to be – which may not happen if the state steps in and decides for you.

Your solicitor or other estate planning specialist can guide you to ensure you make suitable provision for dependants.

Just remember that your Will also deals with other relevant issues like guardianship of your children or pets, and where you want your final resting place to be. By not having a Will, you are leaving these important decisions up to your family – at exactly the time when they need it the least.

The opinions expressed in this article should not be taken as financial advice or a recommendation for any financial product. Rod Schubert Financial Advice (RSFA) shall not be liable or responsible for any information, omissions, or errors present. Any commentary provided are the personal views of the author and are not necessarily representative of the views and opinions of Rod Schubert Financial Advice. We recommend seeking professional legal and/or lending advice before taking any action.

Rod Schubert

My favourite part of being in finance the satisfaction of knowing our clients are in a better position than when they first approached us.

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