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20th January 2020

Intestacy Update.

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Dying intestate means without having made a valid Will. In these circumstances, the law sets out who is entitled to inherit the assets of the deceased person and the order in which they inherit. From 6 February 2020, when a person dies without having made a Will and leaving a surviving spouse, that spouse will be entitled to the first £270,000 of the deceased’s estate (the statutory legacy). This has been increased from the £250,000 it has been since the Inheritance and Trustee Powers Act 2014 came into force.

Where an estate is worth more than £270,000, the balance of the estate is divided as to half for the surviving spouse (on top of the £270,000 statutory legacy) and half for any children of the deceased. If there are no children, or the estate is worth less than £270,000 then everything passes to the surviving spouse.

This will be a welcome increase for those facing the unexpected death of a husband or wife, but has implications for children or other dependents. For expert advice following the death of a loved one, please contact Jennifer Koch on 01223 532737 or click here to email Jennifer.