Here’s a link to an article discussing a recently deceased New York real estate developer, Roman Blum, who (apparently) died without a will and without any relatives to inherit his estate:
Bear in mind, that’s a $40 million estate.
Now, this is actually rather unusual; most people have relatives; even if they don’t have close family, they have cousins, typically descendants of common grandparents, who stand to inherit on an intestate basis. And in Florida, IF someone dies without any ‘collateral descendants’ then the law looks to see if they were married, and if they were, if their spouse predeceased them; if their spouse predeceased them then in Florida the estate could go to ‘collateral descendants’ of the deceased spouse. So, normally, this does not happen very often; in the case of this particular gentleman, he was a Holocaust survivor and essentially all of his family was wiped out, and he had no children.
A somewhat later development; a disbarred lawyer has come forward claiming he has a valid will:
A will for Staten Island developer
I will try to keep up on this story as it develops.
The point, though, is this; if you die without a will, the state will set out who gets your property. And it might not be who you wanted to get it. If you are in or near The Villages, Florida, or Belleview, Lady Lake, or Wildwood, Florida, please feel free to contact my office to discuss your estate plan.