Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Single and Don't Have a Will? New Jersey has one for you.

Category: Estate Planning, Probate and Estate Administration

In a follow-up post to Married and Don't have a Will? New Jersey has one for you, another reminder that "Surprise! If you don't make your own Will, the State of New Jersey has one for you. While this might seem like a generous thing, the question is whether the Wwill that New Jersey made for you matches what you would like done with your assets."

If you don't have a Will and aren't married, your estate will be divided as follows:

1. To your lineal descendants (your blood descendents) by representation (generally equally among your children; however, if one or more children have died, all of the grandchildren whose parents have died will share equally in what all the deceased children would have received);

2. If there are no surviving descendants, to your parents, or the survivor among them;

3. If there are no surviving descendants or parents, to your parents' descendants by representation (your siblings and their children);

4. If there are no surviving descendants, parents or descendants of a parent, but you are survived by one or more grandparents:

* 50% to: first, your paternal grandparents or the survivor; next, to the descendants of your paternal grandparents (your aunts, uncles and cousins on your father's side)

* 50% to: first, your maternal grandparents or the survivor; next, to the descendants of your maternal grandparents (your aunts, uncles and cousins on your mother's side)

5. If there are no surviving descendants of grandparents, then to your step-children or their descendants by representation.

6. If there is no such person, everything to the State of New Jersey (the ultimate beneficiary if you don't have a Will)

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