What Happens If You Die Without A Will In Tennessee?

Although everyone needs a last will, most people procrastinate until it is too late. Suppose you are in a tragic accident and die at the age of 35, a time when no one expects to die. Not everyone has time until their 70s and 80s, as life is too unpredictable. It is important to worry about what will happen to your assets if you pass away without an estate plan and will. 

There are a couple of things that could happen. Your family could get into a fight over who gets what as the probate court decides which property should go to whom. It is highly recommended to hire a probate lawyer if this happens and an estate planning attorney to draft a will during one’s lifetime. Click here to learn more

What happens when someone dies without a will in TN?

When someone dies without a will in TN, the probate court intervenes. All the assets of the deceased individual have to go through probate, and the distribution process is guided by probate law. Since there are no recorded last wishes of the deceased individual, the assets are divided based on what the law says and what the court thinks is right. 

This is called intestate when someone dies without creating a will. In this case, nobody has a say on where the assets should go except for the court. There is no executor pre-chosen by the deceased person. However, an heir at law can file a petition to assume the role of administrator. 

Who gets what in TN according to the law?

The laws are complex, and there is no simple answer to who gets what. Rather, it depends on various factors. Who gets what in TN depends on whether and how many surviving children, spouse, parents, or other close family members the deceased person has. Here is a quick overview of the laws:

  • If someone dies with no spouse but children, the children get everything. 
  • If someone dies with a spouse and no descendants, the spouse gets everything. 
  • If the person has both a spouse and descendants, they equally share the intestate property. However, the spouse’s part should not be less than one-third of the whole. 
  • If they have a parent or parents but no children or spouse, the parents get everything. 
  • If they have siblings but no spouse, descendants, or parents, the siblings receive everything. 

If you do not have any surviving children, parents, siblings, or spouse, the court will look for your closest cousins. And if there are no surviving family members, then the probate estate returns to the State of Tennessee. 

The consequences of dying without a will in Tennessee can be chaotic and stressful for your family. Hire an estate planning attorney today. 

Jason Holder

My name is Jason Holder and I am the owner of Mini School. I am 26 years old. I live in USA. I am currently completing my studies at Texas University. On this website of mine, you will always find value-based content.

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