If my husband dies first, will I have to sell the house and split it with my stepchildren?

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If my husband dies first, will I have to sell the house and split it with my stepchildren?

My husband and I are refinancing the house we live in. Before, the house was in
my name alone, after we refinance, it will now be under both our names. If my
husband dies first, will I have to sell the house and split it between myself and
my stepchildren? He does not have a will, we live in California. My
stepchildren are both of legal age.

Thank you.

Asked on August 3, 2016 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You won't have to sell the house and split the proceeds with your stepchildren.
If your husband dies intestate (without a Will), the rules of intestate succession determine inheritance.  Under intestate succession, the surviving spouse inherits the entire estate of the  deceased spouse.  Therefore, you would inherit the house.  If there is no surviving spouse, the estate is divided equally among the children. 


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