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Cost of Dying without a Will: It may be greater than you think.

What happens if I die without a will?

If you die without a will, it may be necessary for a relative, usually your spouse or child, to file an heirship proceeding in order to determine your heirs. Your relative will pay the Court a minimum of $400 (Montgomery County) to appoint an Attorney Ad Litem to research your family history and report their findings to the Court. Your relative will be required to present two disinterested witnesses, usually your friends, to attend Court and be questioned by attorneys and the judge as to your family history.

Your spouse, children and your friends pay $400 to determine what you already know, and have endured calls from attorneys and a court hearing where they are put under oath and made to testify about a very stressful and emotional subject.

Cost of a Will

Most people will pay under $400 to have a will created by an experienced attorney. In today’s electronic age, will formation has never been simpler, as most everything can be done through email, without an office visit. Of course, some people will need more than a simple will, and would need to contact us or an estate planning attorney for help.

Why do I need a will, everything goes to my spouse, right?

Intestate succession in Texas is very different than you might think. You own two types of property:

1. Community Property – generally, is property that is acquired while you are married.

2. Separate Property – generally, property you acquired before marriage, through gift or inheritance.

Of course, there are many circumstances to consider in determining community property and separate property assets, and you should see an attorney if you have any questions.

If you die without a will, you do not determine where you assets go, for example:

That’s right, the only way your spouse inherits all of your community and separate assets, is if you have no children, parents or siblings.

To make things more complicated this list is not all inclusive, there are rules for children you have adopted, children you have placed for adoption, children born after you are deceased, other children born during your marriage, half relatives, nieces and nephews, grandchildren, etc.

The worst case scenario becomes when you and your spouse die around the same time, for example a car crash. Who takes care of your children, when do they receive their inheritance, who files with the Court, what happens to your parents?

"I need a will!"

Easier than you think

Our firm provides simple wills for $250.00 or $400.00 for married couple. We also have a package that includes a simple will, statutory durable power of attorney, medical power of attorney and directive to physicians for $400.00 or $600.00 for married couples. We send you a questionnaire through email to fill out and will communicate everything through email. You will need to set up a time to properly sign the will. We provide discounts to law enforcement, firefighters and teachers.

A statutory durable power of attorney grants the named person the ability to handle your financial affairs once you become incapacitated. The medical power of attorney grants the named person the ability to make medical decisions for you, if you become unable to make decisions for yourself. The directive to physicians is also known as a ‘living will’ provides for end of life choices, should it become necessary.

A will gives you power. The only way to make sure the people you love receive the assets you wish them to receive is to have a will. There are no excuses to not get this done today.


This article is for informational and educational purposes only and is not offered as legal advice for which one may rely. This firm does not represent you until it is retained and has agreed in writing to do so. Legal counsel is advisable any time you seek advice or action that may have legal consequences. The law changes frequently, please consult an attorney for advice to your specific circumstance.

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