Q: My aunt passed away with no will and my mother, her only living sibling, has been taken care of the arrangements.
She was told she had to split the estate with 2 of my cousins from an already deceased sibling. Is this true? And if so, how much is she required to split it? 50-25-25, 33-33-33?
A: If a Virginia resident dies intestate, without a will, and without a trust, his or her real property not title in survivorship, and the surplus of personal property, will pass according to the course of descents or laws of intestate succession. If that resident has no surviving spouse, no surviving children or their descendants, and no surviving parents, then the estate would pass to the decedent's siblings and their descendants. In such an instance, the estate would be divided, per stirpes, into the number of siblings, living and deceased, and those portions of the deceased sibling(s) would be divided among his or her or their descendants. While real property and the surplus of personal property pass in the same course, personal property is first subject to debts, costs and charges of the estate.
A personal representative of an estate in Virginia should first consult with an experienced Virginia probate lawyer for advice on how to administer the estate.
Shemeka C Hankins agrees with this answer
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