Many states provide certain family members with rights to a portion of the intestate estate that are granted before any portion of the estate is distributed to other heirs.
For instance, Pennsylvania allows a surviving spouse, child, or parent who resided with the deceased to claim $3,500 from the estate. If claimed, this $3,500 is taken from the intestate estate and given to the claimant before the rest of the estate is distributed.
Kansas provides a surviving spouse and minor children with an allowance of not more than $35,000 and up to 160 acres of land lying outside of an incorporated city or one acre lying within.
Oklahoma grants a surviving spouse the deceased spouse’s sole automobile or allows the surviving spouse to choose one car if the deceased has more than one.
Kentucky allows a surviving spouse or children to select up to $15,000 of the intestate personal property.
Most commonly, the person who wishes to claim the right must make a specific application to the proper court within a set time-frame. The court must then approve and grant the right and, depending upon the request and the applicable state law, determine the amount that will be given.
If you wish to determine the distribution of an intestate estate with consideration of these factors, simply subtract the amount of the allowance that will be claimed and granted from the amount of the intestate estate entered at the appropriate state’s Intestacy Evaluator℠.