Q: In Texas, when a minor child dies intestate is probate necessary?
A minor child died and the family is filing a wrongful death suit. Do they need to go through probate?
A: It depends on the cause of action. The administration of a decedent's estate is necessary to pursue a survival action, but not a wrongful death suit. One of the biggest practical differences between a survival action and a wrongful death claim is that with a wrongful death claim, damages typically go directly to the family and would not be included in the decedent's probate assets. Unfortunately, the defendants in the suit typically want a representative of the estate appointed to release any claims the estate has against the defendant before settling.
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