• Attorney Kevin Parker

What happens to a person's property if they die without a will?

Updated: Mar 15, 2019


A photo of family members looking at a family photo album to determine how they are related to a deceased relative for probate and inheritance purposes.

In Georgia, the rules of inheritance when a person dies without a will are set by statute. OCGA § 53-2-1 provides the order in which heirs will inherit from a intestate decedent's estate.


  • If a decedent is survived by a spouse, and no children or other descendant, then the spouse is the sole heir.

  • If a decedent is survived by a spouse and any child or descendant, then the spouse shall share equally with the children. The spouse's portion shall not be less than a one-third share.

  • If there is no surviving spouse, then the decedent's children shall share the estate equally. If any of the decedent's children died before the decedent, then their children, if any, shall equally share their deceased parent's share.

  • If there is no surviving spouse, and no surviving children or other descendants, then any surviving parents of the decedent shall share the estate equally.

  • If there is no surviving spouse, no surviving children or other descendants, and no surviving parents, then the decedent's surviving siblings shall share the estate equally. If any sibling predeceased the decedent, then their children will share their deceased parent's share equally.

And so on. Georgia probate law also provides for more remote degrees of kinship and certain other situations. It is important to submit the estate of a deceased loved one to the probate court process to ensure the rights of all heirs are protected. Many people do not do so, for what may be understandable reasons, but later find themselves feeling slighted or in disagreement with other relatives of the decedent. Attorney Kevin Parker is a Georgia probate attorney in Griffin and helps clients ensure they receive what they are entitled to and deserve.


Call our Griffin law firm today to schedule a free consultation regarding your Georgia probate issue.


(770) 467-3700


Or schedule a free consultation online at www.thekpfirm.com.



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