Intestacy

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Intestacy'

The condition of an estate of an individual who dies with property valued greater than outstanding debts, but in which there is not a valid will present. Intestacy may also exist if an existing will does not cover an entire estate. In common law systems, property of an estate in intestacy will typically first go to a spouse, then to children and descendants.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Intestacy'

Rules governing the succession of an estate in intestacy are typically laid out by the state in which the deceased lived, and may vary across the United States. Because of the complexity of this type of estate law, called intestacy law, individuals who want to determine who receives property from an estate, should ensure that they complete a will.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Probate

    The legal process in which a will is reviewed to determine whether ...
  2. Escheat

    The transfer of title of property or an estate to the state when ...
  3. Beneficiary

    Anybody who gains an advantage and/or profits from something. ...
  4. Asset

    1. A resource with economic value that an individual, corporation ...
  5. Will

    A legally enforceable declaration of how a person wishes his ...
  6. See-Through Trust

    A trust that is treated as the beneficiary of an individual retirement ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. If both the primary and contingent beneficiaries are unavailable, what happens to ...

    One of the most common mistakes in estate planning is not keeping beneficiary designations up to date on life insurance policies ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is a family Limited Liability Company (LLC)?

    A family limited liability company (LLC) is formed by family members to conduct business in a state that permits such form ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How is maintenance of standard of living for survivors accomplished in estate planning?

    Estate planning is an integral component of comprehensive financial planning, as it allows individuals and couples to maintain ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What is the difference between an intervivos trust and a testamentary trust?

    Estate planning offers tools to establish and maintain effective control over cash, investment and real estate assets during ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What are the differences between a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and a Certified ...

    The differences between a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) are many, but comes down ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What is the difference between revocable and irrevocable intervivos trusts?

    Within estate planning, individuals have a myriad of options for maintaining control over assets beyond the grave. A tool ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Retirement

    Establishing A Revocable Living Trust

    This arrangement allows you to have more control over your estate - both before and after your death.
  2. Options & Futures

    An Estate Planning Must: Update Your Beneficiaries

    Life changes make it time to rewrite your plan's designations.
  3. Retirement

    Skipping-Out on Probate Costs

    Don't let bad estate planning lead to unnecessary costs and stress for your inheritors.
  4. Insurance

    Indexed Universal Life Insurance: The Pros & Cons

    What you need to know, to see if these vehicles fit into your financial plan.
  5. Taxes

    Estate Planning for a Surviving Spouse

    Estate planning for surviving spouses can be difficult for a number of reasons, so it's important to have good support and financial advice.
  6. Professionals

    Gay Marriage Ruling: Its Impact on Estate Planning

    Same-sex couples now face the same legal and financial issues as heterosexual couples; some may need to adopt simpler, more mainstream financial plans.
  7. Taxes

    3 Secrets You Didn't Know About Estate Planning

    Every advisor and saver needs to know these three estate planning secrets.
  8. Retirement

    Roth 401(k) Vs. Roth IRA: Which One Is Better?

    It all depends on your age, your income - and your plans for your retirement nest egg.
  9. Professionals

    How to Best Navigate Taxes in Retirement

    Here's a rundown on tax strategies that can help extend the life of a nest egg.
  10. Personal Finance

    5 Signs You Need A Postnup

    They're not the most fun thing to contemplate, but these contracts can actually help a marriage.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Multicurrency Note Facility

    A credit facility that finances short- to medium-term Euro notes. Multicurrency note facilities are denominated in many currencies. ...
  2. National Currency

    The currency or legal tender issued by a nation's central bank or monetary authority. The national currency of a nation is ...
  3. Treasury Yield

    The return on investment, expressed as a percentage, on the debt obligations of the U.S. government. Treasuries are considered ...
  4. Bund

    A bond issued by Germany's federal government, or the German word for "bond." Bunds are the German equivalent of U.S. Treasury ...
  5. European Central Bank - ECB

    The central bank responsible for the monetary system of the European Union (EU) and the euro currency. The bank was formed ...
  6. Quantitative Easing

    An unconventional monetary policy in which a central bank purchases private sector financial assets in order to lower interest ...
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!