How will my grandmother's estate be distributed?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 28, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

My grandmother died leaving no will. She had 7 children, 2 of them died before her. Neither one of the deceased children left a will.. The deaceased children each had children. my father had six children, and my uncle had two children. How is her estate supposed to be distributed is my question?

Expert Answers

Judy and Fred co-mediate family property and financial conflicts, and each work individually as mediators as well. Judy Barber, a mediator and family business consultant, assists clients in resolving overlapping family and money conflicts so they are better able to make sound estate planning decisions. Frederick Hertz is an attorney and mediator who specializes in resolving co-ownership matters involving families, siblings, spouses, cohabitants and domestic partners.

Each state has its own rules about intestate succession, which is the term for the rules of inheritance for those who die without leaving a will. You should consult with an estate lawyer in your local area to learn the rules for your particular state, especially where some of the immediate heirs (i.e. her children) have died. You also will want to learn how to commence the court process for distribution of her assets. In most states the procedures are fairly complex, and so you'll probably have to hire an attorney to help you sort things out and make the legally authorized distributions.