If someone dies without a will in New York, they might not need a will. A will only affects assets held by the deceased alone. If they died with all of their assets jointly held by another person, the assets would fall to the joint owner.
However, if there were assets in their name alone and there is no will, those assets have no place to go. This is when the law takes over. The court will appoint an administrator rather than an executor, who will ensure the assets are distributed according to the law. In New York, the law says the spouse receives 50 percent of the assets while the children split the other 50 percent. If there is no spouse, the children will split the assets equally. In the case of no spouse and no children, the assets are distributed using a hierarchy of closest relatives.
At Makofsky & Associates, P.C., each of the knowledgeable Long Island estate planning attorneys have more than 20 years of experience helping clients prepare for the future. They will spend time with you to learn about your unique circumstances and craft an estate planning strategy that effectively meets your goals. Schedule an appointment to discuss estate planning by calling (516) 228-6522.