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Blog for June 24, 2015
Mary died owning a parcel of real estate and some banking accounts, all in her name only without any POD designations. Her bereaved relatives consisted of her second husband, John, with whom she did not have any children, and two children by her first marriage: Louise and Joe. Mary did not have a Last Will and Testament.
What will happen to Mary’s property?
When a person dies without a Last Will and Testament the decedent’s probate estate is distributed by way of “intestate succession” In this situation, 25% of the net value of the real estate will be distributed to John and 37.5% of the net value of the real estate will be distributed to each of Mary’s two children ; and 50% of the bank accounts will be distributed to John and 25% of the bank accounts will be distributed to each of Mary’s two children.
The net value of the real estate is the value minus liens and encumbrances. Here John is considered a “surviving second childless spouse”. The bank accounts are considered personal property and they are distributed differently than the real estate. See IC 29-1-2-1.