If my father passed away and did not leave a Will, how do his heirs claim their share of his estate?

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If my father passed away and did not leave a Will, how do his heirs claim their share of his estate?

My father passed away in 2007 and he did not leave a Will or power of Attorney. He has music royalties that have not been claimed. He left behind 4 children and we think that we are entitled to whatever money that he has coming to him.

Asked on October 7, 2010 under Estate Planning, Alabama

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  I believe that you are correct.  The music royalties may bepart of his estate and you, as the beneficiaries of the estate, are entitled to collect the royalties.  What you need to do is have one or more of you appointed as the personal representative of his estate. Your father dies intestate (without a Will).  So the intestacy staute in your state will apply. The personal representative is known as a fiduciary and is given great power under the law to collect the assets of the estate of a decedent.  I would seek help from an attorney here once you get all the documentation together regarding the royalty agreement, etc., as well as any there information regarding his assets.  Good luck.


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