Intestacy in WA state, how is personal property distributed if there are only 2 heirs and no Will

Asked over 5 years ago - Port Angeles, WA

I'm wondering what happens to all the personal property in an estate if there is only 2 heirs and they are not on good terms.

From what I can tell, If a person dies in WA state without a will each heir gets a equal split.

Can one person force all property be sold instead of trying to pick and choose items?

How can you divide knickknacks,junk jewlery, appliances etc?

Attorney answers (1)

  1. Frank A Selden

    Contributor Level 16

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . depends on how you define "heirs". WA intestacy rules treat heirs equally if they are the same relation. I answer your two questions before listing the rule.

    1) The personal representative has a duty to settle the estate. If the PR is one of the two heirs then the non-PR heir could be at a disadvantage. Usually there is a reasonable time for heirs to agree but then the PR would step in and take control.

    2) Any way the heirs want including donating items in good condition to various charities. Heir (H) 1 takes a knick, H2 takes a knack, then H1 takes a knack and H2 takes a knick. Or allow choices in the order H1, H2, H2, H1, H1, H2, H2...

    The net estate of a person dying intestate, or that portion thereof with respect to which the person shall have died intestate, shall descend subject to the provisions of RCW 11.04.250 and 11.02.070, and shall be distributed as follows:

    (1) Share of surviving spouse or state registered domestic partner. The surviving spouse or state registered domestic partner shall receive the following share:

    (a) All of the decedent's share of the net community estate; and

    (b) One-half of the net separate estate if the intestate is survived by issue; or

    (c) Three-quarters of the net separate estate if there is no surviving issue, but the intestate is survived by one or more of his parents, or by one or more of the issue of one or more of his parents; or

    (d) All of the net separate estate, if there is no surviving issue nor parent nor issue of parent.

    (2) Shares of others than surviving spouse or state registered domestic partner. The share of the net estate not distributable to the surviving spouse or state registered domestic partner, or the entire net estate if there is no surviving spouse or state registered domestic partner, shall descend and be distributed as follows:

    (a) To the issue of the intestate; if they are all in the same degree of kinship to the intestate, they shall take equally, or if of unequal degree, then those of more remote degree shall take by representation.

    (b) If the intestate not be survived by issue, then to the parent or parents who survive the intestate.

    (c) If the intestate not be survived by issue or by either parent, then to those issue of the parent or parents who survive the intestate; if they are all in the same degree of kinship to the intestate, they shall take equally, or, if of unequal degree, then those of more remote degree shall take by representation.

    (d) If the intestate not be survived by issue or by either parent, or by any issue of the parent or parents who survive the intestate, then to the grandparent or grandparents who survive the intestate; if both maternal and paternal grandparents survive the intestate, the maternal grandparent or grandparents shall take one-half and the paternal grandparent or grandparents shall take one-half.

    (e) If the intestate not be survived by issue or by either parent, or by any issue of the parent or parents or by any grandparent or grandparents, then to those issue of any grandparent or grandparents who survive the intestate; taken as a group, the issue of the maternal grandparent or grandparents shall share equally with the issue of the paternal grandparent or grandparents, also taken as a group; within each such group, all members share equally if they are all in the same degree of kinship to the intestate, or, if some be of unequal degree, then those of more remote degree shall take by representation.

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