Phoenix, AZ asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Arizona

Q: My mother just died in California. Next of kin is her husband (my stepfather) and a total of four children.

There is no will. My sister has proclaimed herself executor of the estate. I'm in Arizona. How does her property get distributed?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN
  • Licensed in Arizona

A: You need to identify which items in your mother's estate were her community property with your stepfather and which were her separate property. Under California law, your stepfather will inherit all of your mother's community property and one-third of her separate property. Your mother's children inherit two-thirds of her separate property, i.e. 1/6th each if your mother had four children. This assumes no children predeceased your mother.

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