Under Texas law, when someone passes away without a will, that is referred to as their having died “intestate”. (The word “intestate” simply means, “without a will.”)
Texas has laws in place as to how the property is distributed when a family member dies without a will. These laws make provision for the widow or widower, children of the current and former marriages, and generally makes provision for the bloodline or adopted heirs as to their rightful portions.
One of the first things to do is, of course, a thorough search for a will. Sometimes it’s in a safety deposit box, filing cabinet, or it may even be pre-recorded with the county clerk.
Should a will not be found, it’s a good idea to determine who should be the “Applicant” to the court in moving the process along to inventory and appraise the estate, deal with creditors and claims, pay taxes and distribute according to the court’s determination of heirship.
One of the biggest contingencies in this matter, is the value of the estate. There are laws to address the case of estates less than $75,000, with other qualifications.
For more information, call The Barrera Law Firm at (956) 428-2822 for a free consultation or fill in our online request form.