Yes. The default in state law, called “intestacy,” is designed with married couples in mind. If a married couple dies without any estate plan, the survivor will get a good portion of the assets left behind. However, if you are unmarried, unless you are in a state that legally recognizes domestic partnerships or civil unions and you have registered as such, the survivor would get nothing. Instead, the family of origin of the unmarried partner who died would get anything in that partner’s name, including bank accounts, real estate, etc.
About Alan Augulis, Estate Planning Attorney
Mr. Augulis founded his Warren, New Jersey law firm so that he could focus his practice in the areas of advanced estate planning and tax law. Mr. Augulis has invested considerable time and energy helping to educate others on the topic of estate planning and has become a sought-after speaker in the tax and estate planning arena because of his informative and entertaining seminars.