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MOTHER DIED AND LEFT NO WILL WHAT HAPPENS WITH PROPERTIES THAT WERE SOLELY IN HER NAME?

Miami, FL |

SHE WAS MARRIED OWNED 2 PROPERTIES WITH 2 HOUSES ON 1 AND 1 ON OTHER. SHE OWNED BOTH FREE AND CLEAR NO MORTGAGES. ALSO HAD BANK ACCOUNTS AND VEHICLES

HER HUSBAND SAYS IT IS ALL HIS AND WE HAVE NO ACCESS TO DOCUMENTS

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Attorney answers 3

Posted

The properties and other assets that are solely in your mother's name if she is a Florida resident would pass pursuant to the terms of her last valid will. If she had no will, it would pass by virtue of the intestacy laws of the state of Florida which provides that all goes to the surviving spouse if neither the decedent nor her spouse have any children from another relationship. If the dededent or the spouse have a child or children from another relationship, 50% to surviving spouse and 50% to lineal heirs (children or more distant descendants per stirpes). Of course, homestead, automobiles and family allowance are provided for before determining the intestate share. These provisions may also affect property that would be otherwise disposed of by will.

If you have a question about a specific estate, you need to consult with a trust and estate attorney.

Posted

While you may think that the answer to your question is very simple, there are many questions that would need to be answered in order for you to have a correct response. If you want an accurate answer, I strongly recommend that you contact a probate attorney, coming to the consultation with a copy of the death certificate, deeds, titles or registrations for the vehicles and copies of the bank statements, if available, among other documents.

If you simply want to know what the Florida statutes say about inheritance when there is no will, here is a link to that part of the statutes: http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0700-0799/0732/0732.html.

Eileen D. Jacobs, Esq.
Office: 2505 W. Virginia Avenue
Tampa, FL 33607
(813) 877-9600
Mailing: P.O. Box 14953
Clearwater, Florida 33766-4953
(727) 787-6595

Posted

Remember the general rule of thumb that titling of assets & beneficiary designations always trump a Will or general laws of intestacy (who inherits if someone dies without a Will and has assets in their name). A Will provides directions to the Probate Court about who you want to inherit your property and upon what terms (outright or in trust, etc.); it still requires a probate, however to retitle the assets to whomever is supposed to inherit them. Without a Will, the Court will simply look to the intestacy laws to determine who inherits the property.

Another issue to review is whether either of the real properties is the decedent's homestead as defined under Florida law. If so, there are special rules about who may inherit such a property if the decedent is survived by a spouse and/or minor children.