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Rights of step children after death of step parent if parent precedes in death

Hutchinson, KS |

When a parent dies and a step parent is living in the home, what rights do the step children have, if any to get their parent's property? Are they entitled to half of the property that was shared at the time of the first parent's death or are they at the mercy of the step parent and the will they leave?

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Attorney answers 1


First question is whether your parent died with or without a Will and what the Will says. If there is no Will, Kansas law provides that 50% of a deceased person's assets pass to the surviving spouse and 50% to the childen. However, if a deceased person owned all of their property jointly with their spouse and/or named the spouse as primary beneficiary on assets, there may be little, if any, assets that would be subject to the terms of a Will or the laws of intestate succession. Did you parent own any assets in their individual name? On the personal property, you could possible file a probate action seeking ownership of 50%, however it could be difficult, and expensive, to prove. So, unless the personal property has significant value, it is probably not wise to go to war over personal property.


Mr. Post is licensed to practice law in KS and MO. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that if known could significantly change the reply unsuitable. Mr. Post strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney to ensure proper advice is received.

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