Georgia Laws of Intestacy: Who Inherits If You Die Without A Will?

Treadaway & Treadaway Aug. 19, 2019

When you pass away without leaving a will you are “intestate.” Intestacy means that state law, rather than you, determines who inherits what portion of your estate. Because death is a certainty for all of us, estate planning is a necessity. Intestacy succession laws of the state of Georgia dictate who inherits your assets. Consequently, intestacy can create a host of issues and complications your descendants.

Under Georgia intestacy laws, a surviving spouse’s share of your estate may not be less than one-third of the total estate. That means if a person dies with a spouse and one child, they share the estate equally. If they leave behind a spouse and four children, the spouse receives a third of the estate and the children equally divide the remaining two-thirds. If only a spouse survives the deceased person, the spouse likely inherits the entire estate. If there is no spouse, surviving children inherit the entire estate.

What Happens When The Intestate Estate Is Not Survived By A Spouse or Descendants

In a situation where no spouse or descendants survive the decedent, parents may be able to inherit. If both parents are alive, they equally inherit the deceased person’s estate. If only one parent is still alive, they inherit the entire probate estate. If the decedent is survived by siblings, but not parents, the siblings (or their descendants) inherit the intestate estate. If there are no siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and first cousins are in line to inherit.

As you can see, dying intestate can create a complex situation. Taking time to plan your estate now leaves you and your family with invaluable peace of mind. If you need help creating an estate plan, call the experienced team of attorneys at Treadaway & Treadaway. We specialize in estate planning. Contact us today!