What Happens If I Die Without a Will?

Many people wonder – What Happens if I Don’t Have a Will?

Dying without having a valid will executed is also known as dying intestate.  Intestacy results when a person who is deceased has assets greater than their enforceable debts and funeral expenses and that person’s assets must then be distributed according to the rules of intestacy for the state of Louisiana rather than by testament.  This could leave your assets in a vulnerable state if you do not have something in place to designate how you would like for them to be distributed after your passing.

If you look at the chart below, it demonstrates what happens to your assets if you die intestate.

Top Class Inherits To the Exclusion of All Others

La Civil Code Art 880, et. seq.

Separate Property
(Property Acquired Prior To Marriage, Inheritances)

1st.  Children or Grandchildren if No Surviving Children

2nd.  Siblings w/ Parental Usufruct (Right of Use), Nieces and Nephews if No Surviving Siblings

3rd.  Parents

4th.  Surviving Spouse

5th.  Grandparents

6th.  Remote Collaterals (i.e. Distant Relatives)

7th.  State of Louisiana

Community Property
(Property Acquired During a Marriage = Decedent’s 1/2 Share)

1st.  Children or Grandchildren if No Surviving Children w/ Spousal Usufruct (Right of Use)

2nd.  Surviving Spouse

  1.   If No Surviving Spouse, see left column (Separate Property).

3rd.  If No Surviving Spouse, see left column (Separate Property).

If you would like to avoid intestacy and ensure that your assets are distributed correctly after your passing, contact the Law Firm of Ryan S. McBride today for a free consultation.  We will go over your situation and help you to distribute your assets according to your final wishes.

Contact us at 504-256-1705 or fill out our online form today.

We represent clients throughout Southeast Louisiana, including the New Orleans Metro Area, River Parishes, River Regions and in the parishes of Jefferson, Orleans, St. Bernard, Plaquemines, St. Tammany, St. Charles, Lafourche, St. John, St. John the Baptist, and Tangipahoa.