Dying without a Will

What happens if you die without a will? The short answer is it's usually messy and drawn out, so for the sake of your loved ones, try to avoid it. 

If you die without having a will you are said to have died "intestate". Generally, spouses and children of the deceased must share between them in accordance with a formula. 

It's also important to understand that assets which are located in or connected to other jurisdictions may not to be distributed in accordance with rules in those other places. 

An administrator to the estate must be appointed to by the court before he or she has the authority to deal with the estate in any way. 

Being an administrator can be a daunting task and it's recommended to get specific legal advice.

More Information

If you die without having made a will you are said to have died “intestate”.

In Queensland, the Succession Act sets out the rights of relatives to share in the estate of someone who dies intestate.

The Succession Act contains a set of quite specific and complex rules about the division of the estate of an intestate person.  Generally, spouses and children of the deceased must share between them in accordance with a formula and take priority over all other relatives.

It is also important to understand that assets which are located in or connected to other jurisdictions may need to be distributed in accordance with different rules in those other places.

The person who takes care of an estate where the deceased had no will is called an administrator.

An administrator must be appointed by the Supreme Court before he or she has authority to deal with the estate in any way.

Such an appointment is called a grant of letters of administration and is similar to a grant of probate where the deceased made a will.

There are more rules by which the court decides whether a person applying to be the administrator is the appropriate person to administer the estate.

If you require any further information please contact us on 07 5443 9988 or [email protected].

Argon Law is a Sunshine Coast law firm based in Maroochydore.  We are commercial lawyers, body corporate lawyers and property lawyers and are eager to assist you in any way we can.

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