Since my husband has children and I do not, if he dies first do his children have any claim to our property?

No Will has been drawn up yet.

Asked on August 29, 2013 under Estate Planning, Virginia


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

What you need to have is a Will.  Without one here is what the Virginia Bar has to say on the matter:

In Virginia, if you are married, your estate generally passes entirely to your surviving spouse; however, if you have surviving children or their descendants who are not also the children or their descendants of your surviving spouse, your children and their descendants divide two-thirds of your estate, and your spouse takes the other one-third. 

Many people rely on the fact that assets are jointly held, which is generally fine. But contrary to popular belief, joint ownership of assets between husband and wife may result in unnecessary estate taxes at the death of the survivor in Virginia.  

So I would speak with an estate planner asap.  Good luck.

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