Understanding Legal Heirship: Rights of Relatives in Property Distribution

September 6, 2023    Probate Lawyers Perth
Understanding Legal Heirship: Rights of Relatives in Property Distribution

When a person passes away, all the loved ones know who the deceased person might have wanted the inheritance claim WA to go to. But the problem here is that the deceased individual might not have a “WILL” or did not mention the names of the beneficiaries.

This clearly shows that the person who gets to inherit the estate is not always that obvious, especially when there is no beneficiary. This will surely leave behind a room for misunderstanding between the loved ones of the deceased person and the individual responsible for managing the estate.

But there are ways through which this issue can be mitigated and how to effectively distribute the assets among the loved ones of the deceased person when there is no will.

Why There is No Presence of a Beneficiary?

One of the biggest reasons there is no beneficiary is because there is no will. But the professional probate lawyers in Perth have said there are several other reasons why a Will doesn’t have beneficiaries. These are:

  • When there is a presence of a valid Will, but the beneficiary mentioned in the Will has passed away.
  • The Will has mentioned all the beneficiaries, but the Will itself is not valid.
  • The life or super insurance has mentioned the name of the beneficiary, but the beneficiary has passed away.

If one wishes to gain more information on why beneficiaries are not mentioned, one can speak with the best probate lawyer in Perth, as they can provide a detailed explanation of it.

How Are the Heirs of an Estate Determined?

When there is no presence of any legal heir, it’s because the deceased individual did not have a valid will. These types of situations are known as “dying intestate”.

In Australia, intestacy stands out as part of the succession law, which includes both the common and legislative law. However, the inheritance lawyer Perth has pointed out that Australia does not have a single intestate succession law.

Rather than that, every Australian territory and state is responsible for taking care of the intestate estates. An administrator of an estate that has no valid will must follow the regulations and rules of their territory or state.

However, the order of an estate’s administrator will depend entirely on the connection to the deceased individual. Depending heavily on the territory or the state, it will take place in this particular order:

  • De facto partner or spouse
  • Child/children
  • Parents [When there is no living children or spouse]
  • Grandparents, uncles, aunts or siblings [Where are no living family members]

How Exactly is the Estate Distributed?

Depending heavily on the territory or state and the inheritance law in Australia, the order, which is mentioned in the above section, will help determine who will inherit the intestate estate. What the children, spouse, aunt or uncle will get depends completely on the estate’s location.

  • All the smaller estates will go to the living spouse, but the larger ones will be divided. Besides that, there are several types of assets that need different sorts of distribution.
  • To understand this part, here is an example: “The spouse will mostly inherit the household goods and the personal possession”.
  • But on certain occasions, a spouse, whether or not they are a joint tenant, might be eligible to inherit the matrimonial property despite the size of the estate.
  • When the deceased individual has no children or spouse, other relatives of the deceased will become eligible to inherit the assets of the estate.

If the deceased individual has no living family at all, the whole estate will be given to the territory or state after paying off the funeral expenses and unpaid debts.

Does Probate Become Essential When There is No Heir?

Whether there is a will or not, it’s not possible to decide the heirs of the deceased state. But right before distributing the estate, one might have to apply for the Probate. The approval of the probate inheritance WA will become compulsory where there is an executor and a valid will.

Granting of the Probate is an order from the Supreme Court of Australia. The order helps identify the individual who will be the executor and take care of the estate of the deceased individual.

Apart from that, there is no presence of a proper will, there will be no administrator, and he/she has to apply for the “Letters of Administration”.

Understanding the Anti-Lapse Rule 

Having no will is not similar to having a will with a deceased heir/beneficiary. Firstly, the Australian court might have no clue what exactly the deceased individual needed. Due to such reasons, it leads to intestate succession.

On the other hand, the court is well aware of what exactly the deceased person wanted but couldn’t fulfil the wish because the heir has already passed away. In many of the Australian states, this type of problem can easily be resolved through the anti-lapse rule.

Here, the anti-lapse rule is a method through which the inheritance is passed down to the heirs of the deceased individual.

How Can the Inheritance Lawyers Help You?

The Inheritance lawyers in Australia are experts in dealing with cases where there is no heir to claim the deceased person’s estate. They will certainly offer legal advice on inheritance and how to proceed further to claim the assets.

These lawyers also have skills, knowledge and understanding of handling such cases and will provide an exceptional service to their clients in such matters. They will also educate their clients on inheritance law and take care of all the paperwork on their behalf.

They will make sure that the deceased estate has been equally distributed among the loved ones of the deceased person without any issues or problems. It’s guaranteed that the whole process will go smoothly.

Summing Up

It can be pretty confusing for people when they have no idea who will inherit the estate of the deceased person, especially when there is no heir/beneficiary. When he/she is in doubt or does not know what can be done, it’s better to speak with the our best Probate Lawyers in Perth. They can offer the help one needs regarding such matters and work hard to provide a positive outcome.

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