Thompson Family: A Journey Through Intestacy

Following the sudden death of their mother, Susan Thompson, the Thompson family found themselves at a crossroads in the beautiful town of Princeton, New Jersey. Susan was a beloved teacher and an avid gardener. She left behind a charming colonial-style home full of memories but sadly no will.

Sarah, James, and David, her three grown children, were all sad about her death, but they didn't know what to do with the fortune. The siblings didn't know how to handle their mother's assets, especially the family home, which had a lot of emotional value, since there was no will to help them.

The Finding of Wills and Testaments Laws

The Thompson children learned about New Jersey's intestacy laws in the weeks after their mother died. These laws say how property is divided when someone dies without a will. They learned that because they were Susan's straight heirs, they were each entitled to an equal share of the estate. This realization made them feel a little better, but it also meant they had to figure out how to run the family home and finally sell it.

The Choice of an Administrator

The siblings knew they needed legal help, so they talked to an estate lawyer. The lawyer told them that the first thing they needed to do was name an administrator for the estate. James volunteered to do this because he had experience with money. He filed a plea with the Mercer County Surrogate's Court with the lawyer's help and was officially named as the estate's administrator.

The Process of Probate

James's first job as administrator was to make a list of his mother's property, which included the family home. He also had to let possible creditors know about the estate by putting an ad in a Princeton newspaper. This gave them the chance to make claims against it.

The Thompson family was glad to learn that their mother had been careful with her money and left behind very little debt. They could then focus on the next big problem, which was the family house.

The House Will Be Sold

It was hard to decide to sell the house. Each sibling had strong emotional ties to the house because it brought back memories of fun family times and adventures as a child. But they knew that because of their different lives and places, keeping the property wasn't possible.

The siblings decided to sell the house and use the money to do something that would have made their mother proud: honor her memory. A part of the sale was going to be given to the local community garden, where Susan had spent many happy hours helping.

Getting the House Ready to Sell

Getting the house ready to sell was a work of love. The brothers spent the weekends going through their mother's things, telling stories, and remembering old times. They fixed up a few things and set up the house to show off its best features with the help of a local real estate agent.

The Deal

A lot of people were interested in the colonial-style home with its well-kept gardens and friendly setting. Soon after, a young family eager to make their own memories in the house made the Thompsons a generous offer.

It was bittersweet to close the deal. The Thompson brothers were both sad and happy as they turned over the keys. They were able to get through New Jersey's complicated inheritance process without a will, which protected their mother's legacy and made their family stronger.

Thoughts on the Journey

After everything that happened, the Thompsons learned how important it is to have a will. They all promised to make their own wills so that their loved ones wouldn't have to deal with the same risks they did.

When someone close to you dies without a will, things can get hard. The Thompson family's story is a powerful warning of this. But it also shows how strong family bonds are and how people can come together to honor a loved one's memory, even if they didn't say what they wanted.

Posted by Anthony Licciardello on
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