Affidavit of Heirship Attorneys in Houston Helping Heirs Inherit Property
If you’re a family member of a loved one that recently died without a will, you could be legally entitled to real property and assets left behind by the deceased. As an affidavit of heirship is appropriate for nominal assets or a small estate, in Texas, you can file a small estate affidavit if the following is true:
- No petition for the appointment of a personal representative is pending or has been approved
- Thirty days have passed since the decedent has died
- The value of assets, excluding the estate, is less than or equal to $75,000
- The judge approves the affidavit
- Other family members or “heirs” agree on how the assets will be distributed
- A certified copy and order of approval are given
The laws in Texas around personal property, real property, and how to transfer ownership can be tricky. Our probate lawyers with The Hatchett Law Firm can help you understand the full scope, process, what’s needed, and what to expect when you go through the transfer of ownership.
Our estate planning and probate lawyers have experience in estate setup and preparation, so you can ensure that your heirs and beneficiaries get your hard-earned assets without court involvement and headaches associated with probate legal proceedings.
What is an Heirship?
Heirship is the legal right to receive money, property, or possessions from a person who has died without a will. This means the decedent did not communicate how they wanted their belongings to be distributed, and to whom, through a personal representative or an executor.
Heirs typically include:
- Distant relatives
As part of this, affidavits of heirship are traditionally used to avoid costly legal proceedings when the decedent only had property, personal property, or a small estate. If you file a claim as an heir, and it’s approved, you are entitled to receive the property of your deceased loved one.
Other family members, or other omitted heirs, also have legal rights to possibly dispute or contest an affidavit of heirship. They must present evidence or proof that they are related in order to overrule the court’s decision. A common example of this might be a child from a second marriage that wasn’t included as a “first line” heir.
If you are one of the decedent’s heirs, and you believe you are entitled to assets from a deceased loved one who didn’t have a will, and there’s the real and personal property at stake, get legal help from our Texas affidavit attorneys.
What is an Affidavit of Heirship?
An affidavit of heirship can be used in lieu of a will if there is no will and the estate is limited to real estate property. An affidavit is used to identify heirs, such as children, grandchildren, or parents, who might be entitled to any property left behind. Spouses are typically not part of this, as they fall under a different category.
Per Texas Estates Code 203.001, the affidavit serves as evidence about a property once it’s been on file for at least five years. With this timeframe, the court can use this as a chain to connect any available heirs and a title of transfer of property.
Our affidavit of heirship lawyers can help you draft an affidavit of heirship using the following information:
- Name, address, and date of death
- Marital status of the deceased person
- Names of surviving heirs
- A personal statement claiming the deceased did not have a will
- A personal statement that you are an heir under Texas intestacy law
- Types of property to be distributed, per state affidavit of heirship law
- Agreement by deceased’s heirs regarding the process for property to be distributed
- Third-party verification, or witnesses, that you have a right to inherit the property
The Hatchett Law Firm can walk you through the affidavit process, from start to finish, including finding a notary and disinterested parties (or witnesses) to validate the affidavit of heirship.
What Does an Affidavit of Heirship Lawyer Do?
Navigating the ins and outs of seeking an inheritance without a will is best suited for a well-groomed team of attorneys that understand the affidavit of heirship and probating assets without a will. The Hatchett Law Firm fits this description.
Working with a probate attorney from our law firm might be a good option for you, if:
- Your deceased loved one died without a will, also called dying intestate, and you are a family member who might be entitled to money or property
- You can legally identify yourself, with proof, as a lawful heir
- You are interested in taking over your loved one’s estate without going through costly probate court
- You and other potential heirs agree on how to distribute the assets
- Third-party or uninterested parties can verify that you have a right to your loved one’s estate
Under Texas law, individuals applying for testamentary letters, letters of administration, determinations of heirship, and guardianships of the person or estate must be represented by an attorney.
Lastly, when property can’t be transferred through other approaches, our attorneys can help with determining heirship when it’s in question. This includes a personal representative of the state, a creditor of the estate, a person claiming to be the owner of the estate, and a party seeking the appointment of an independent administrator.
Our legal team will work to your advantage when understanding and working through the complexities of estate law in Texas.
Get a Free Consultation with an Affidavit of Heirship Lawyer
When a property owner dies intestate, and you’re a proven heir, you might be entitled to property, money, or other personal belongings. An affidavit of heirship serves as an instrument for transferring ownership to heirs, identifying who legal heirs to the property are, what the property is, and who is entitled to ownership.
An affidavit of heirship is a legal service we can assist you with if there’s a small estate with personal belongings involved. Alternatively, if you are dealing with a complicated situation and disputes among other possible heirs and are possibly facing probate court, consult our probate attorneys to come up with a strategy.
In either scenario, you are not alone in this process, and we have all of the bases covered related to estate planning, probate court, affidavit of heirship, and related legal services.
If you are considering filing an affidavit of heirship to pursue money or property from your deceased loved one, we can save you time, money, and stress by avoiding probate court.
Consider a free consultation with our probate attorneys, who can answer your questions and concerns, so you can move forward with confidence and clarity. Call The Hatchett Law Firm today: 281-214-6541.