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What happens if you die without a will?

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2020 | Blog |

When you are young and healthy, drafting a will may not be at the top of your list of priorities. You would be remiss not to create one, however, as failing to do so may cause your loved ones unnecessary hardship. 

Per CNN Money, dying without a will, or dying “intestate,” means that you are essentially relinquishing control over your assets to the state of Florida. Florida state laws then govern how your assets undergo distribution and when your loved ones gain access to them. 

Problems associated with dying intestate 

Many people choose to name a guardian for minor children in their wills. If you fail to draft one and something happens to you, the responsibility of determining where your child should live falls on the state. The state considers the interests of the child when making these decisions, but you still run the risk of the state choosing someone you may not want to provide care for your child when you fail to create a will. 

Inheritance rights in Florida 

If you fail to create a will and have a surviving spouse when you die, your spouse has the strongest inheritance rights over your estate. If you are in the midst of a separation but have not officially divorced, you may not want your ex maintaining such control over your assets and affairs. If you do not have a spouse, but you have minor children, your kids may receive control over your intestate estate. 

Power over your estate 

Failing to create a will means you are usurping control over the legacy you worked hard to create to the state. If you have feelings and preferences about what happens to your assets and children once you are no longer around, be sure to voice them by creating a will.