UK Law Commission Consultation on Intestacy
The intestacy rules govern the inheritance of assets where a person dies without leaving a will disposing of the whole of his or her property.
The paper reviews the current law, discusses options for reform and puts forward questions for consultees, including provisional proposals for reform. Areas highlighted for potential reform include:
- the entitlement of a surviving spouse, where the deceased also left children (perhaps from another relationship), or other relatives;
- whether certain cohabitants should have a place in the intestacy rules, the conditions which have to be met, and how much of the estate they should receive;
- trusts for children on intestacy and the effect of adoption on a child’s entitlement;
- family provision claims by adult children;
- the distinction made in the intestacy rules between full brothers and sisters and half-brothers and sisters;
- the criteria to be met by dependants applying for family provision;
- family provision claims where the deceased did not have his or her permanent home in England and Wales.
The consultation period closes on 28 February 2010.