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My husband recently passed away w/out a will, with the house, credit cards and medical bills in his name only what do I do?

Williamstown, NJ |

We were together for 28 years but only married for 5 months what rights do I have with his estate and assets. We also have 3 children together what rights do they have. We all lived at this residence for 14 years and cannot afford an attorney.

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Attorney answers 3


You will need to see a probate lawyer. This isn't a debt collection issue, except for the medical debts made while you were married. In most states, you will be responsible for paying his medical bills if they were made while married. You can't afford not to hire an attorney! Hope this perspective helps!


I agree that you should contact a probate lawyer. If your husband died without a will his estate will pass under the state's intestate succession laws, but different rules apply for different situations.

My answer to your question does not create an attorney-client relationship. Furthermore, I have not reviewed any laws or cases related to your question in formulating my answer. I am simply providing my "gut reaction" based on the facts as you described.


I agree with my colleagues. I think that you DO need a lawyer. It may not be as expensive as you believe. At the very least, you should take advantage of a free consultation to determine what you need to do. It is likely that you now own the assets, along with your children, based on the facts you set forth. You may have issues requiring conservatorship, if any of the kids are minors. This can get complicated fairly quickly and you have potential personal liability. It is better to pay SOME money NOW, that to pay a LOT of money, LATER.

James Frederick

***Please be sure to mark if you find the answer "helpful" or a "best" answer. Thank you! I hope this helps. ***************************************** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state. I hope you our answer helpful!

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