Things Every Heir Should Know About

An heir is a person who can legally inherit some or all of the things that someone leaves behind after their death. Any heir has the right to inherit, even if the deceased did not leave a will or testament before his or her death. This is because the heirs are usually the children, descendants, or close relatives of the descendants. There are some basic things that every heir should know about for when they are faced with such situations. Here are some facts every heir should know:

Heirs and beneficiaries are not the same

A beneficiary is someone different from an heir. Before getting into the inheritance process steps, you need to differentiate between both types of inheritors. Beneficiaries are not necessarily blood relatives. Hence, they are allowed to receive or inherit someone’s money or property only if their name was mentioned in the Will. On the other hand, heirs, as blood relatives, can inherit someone’s money or property without having their names mentioned in the Will.

The inheritance is not yours alone

Being a blood relative makes you an heir. This does not mean that you will inherit all of the deceased’s properties or money alone. Even if there weren’t any other heirs, but you. For instance, you are the only heir left for your father who just died. After a couple of days, you discover that he was married and that you have a stepmother that was mentioned in his Will. Your stepmother has every right to demand for her share of the inheritance. Another scenario for sharing your inheritance would be if you have siblings. In such a case, the inheritance would be divided among you equally only if there isn’t any Will to determine the share of each one of you.

Seeking an expert’s advice will ease things for you

Do not hesitate to ask for an expert’s help. He or she will be experienced enough to help you understand the probate process. They will also make sure that they give you the right guidance that you will be needing. Apart from helping you out, they won’t cost you much as they should not be too expensive.

Contesting a Will is not the right choice

Contesting a Will is more or less questioning the contents of this Will. You need to bear in mind that taking such action is not really for your own good. You will find yourself wasting your time and your money as it is very expensive and time-consuming. You shall only go for such a thing if you are very certain of your doubts.

It’s like a rule of thumb, if you’re a descendant of the family or coming from the same bloodline, then you are an heir. Doing some research ahead will make you prepared enough to know everything that you need to know as an heir. It will save you from any future conflicts that might occur with other heirs or beneficiaries. As long as you know your right from theirs, you shall not worry about any further troubles.


The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of The World Financial Review.