Who inherits under the rules of intestacy?
If you die without a will, the only people who can automatically inherit under the rules of intestacy are married or civil partners, along with some relatives such as children, grandchildren or siblings.
Married or civil partners will only inherit an estate if they were married or in a civil partnership at the time of their partner’s death. If there are surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren of the person who died – and the estate is valued at more than £250,000 – the partner inherits:
- all the personal property and belongings of the person who has died
- the first £250,000 of the estate (or, the whole estate if it’s worth less than £250,000)
The (anything over but under 450k) remainder of the estate goes to the children or grandchildren with the following priority:
- children – or, if there aren’t any, grandchildren – will get an equal share
- if there aren’t any children or grandchildren, surviving parents of the deceased will get a share
- if there are no children, grandchildren or surviving parents, any brothers and sisters of the deceased will get a share (or, their children will if the siblings died before the deceased did)
- if the deceased has none of the above, the husband, wife or civil partner will inherit the entire estate.