Who owns the property of someone who died without a Will?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Who owns the property of someone who died without a Will?

My minor children’s father passed away and he had 2 motorcycles in

his name. I was wondering who has legal rights to the motorcycles his children or his parents? I was not married to him but have 2 children by him. There was no Will

or anything set in place when died. Also, my kids were living with him at the time and I paid him child support. We had joint custody. When he died over $2000 of child support money was on the card they issued to him when child support was set up. What happens to that money. I know his girlfriend at the time had the card but would not give it to him or his family and I have been told by many people that she spent the money. No where on the card or the account that the money is in is her name on it. The child support office told me there is nothing they can do about it.

Asked on February 29, 2016 under Estate Planning, Texas


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

When someone dies without a Will they are said to have died "intestate". Accordingly, the laws of the state of which the deceased was domiciled as of the date of their death controls. Typically, in such a situation the deceased's surviving spouse, if any, and the children of the deceased split the estate. If the deceased was unmarried at the time of their death, then their children are the sole heirs to the estate. They inherit it all.

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