Is your will valid? To make a valid Will in Texas, you must have legal capacity, testamentary capacity, testamentary intent and certain formalities must be followed. If a Will does not meet all of the requirements set forth by the statutes, it will be declared invalid, meaning that your estate could be distributed according to a statutory formula rather than the way you would have preferred.
Dying without a Will – The Complexities of Texas Intestate Laws
Without a will you have no choice as to who will administer your estate, who will be the guardian of your minor children or the custodian of the estate of your minor children, or who will receive your property in what proportions or when.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU NEED TO PROBATE A WILL. . .One of the biggest concerns for people contemplating the probate process is the expense required in fully probating an estate. Luckily, a properly drafted Will simplifies the probate process. Independent administration in Texas allows Executors and Administrators to serve largely independent of Court supervision. As a result, the probate process in Texas is streamlined and efficient.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE THE SURVIVING SPOUSE. . .In order to ensure that all estate property is fully and efficiently distributed, it is recommended that the surviving spouse probate the Will at the death of the first spouse. Community property residences are generally owned as tenants-in-common; thus, if the surviving spouse later attempts to sell the home, some form of probate or estate administration must be initiated to transfer full title on the house into the surviving spouse’s name.
REMEMBER: Texas Probate Code only provides four (4) years to probate a Will. After four (4) years, all heirs must be notified of any attempt to probate a Will, timely and costly.
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