What to do When You Inherit Property in California

Inheriting property in California
You just inherited property in California, but what do you do with it?

Not to be too morbid, but you know what they say;

Nothing is certain except death and taxes.

When a California resident passes away, their property gets distributed according to the Intestate Succession Laws, which can be found in Division 6 of the California Probate Code.

These inheritance laws provide that the decedent's immediate relatives or other heirs inherit the decedent's property.

The inheritance process can cause significant emotional turmoil. It involves a lot of emotionally draining tasks such as:

  • Going through family heirlooms.

  • Reviewing family photos.

  • Cleaning out the property for the next steps.

In this article, we'll discuss what to expect if you inherit a property in California, and what options you have moving forward.

The will

If the decedent leaves a will, the process will be more straightforward. A will states who the beneficiaries are and what each is entitled too via the inheritance process.

If there is no will, however, the process becomes a little more complicated. In this scenario, the decedent's property has to be equally distributed between their immediate relatives.

If, for instance, the decedent had no spouse and you are one of four total siblings, their property will be equally shared between you and your siblings.

Everyone will get one-fourth of the property. In this case, you need to reach an agreement about what you should do with the property.

Sometimes it can be hard to get everyone involved in the process to agree on what to do.

If you are the only immediate relative, then you become the primary beneficiary, and you can make a decision that best suits you and the property.

What You Can Do Next

After the inheritance process is complete, the time comes to make the tough decision of what you should do next.

Here are some ideas on what to do when you inherit a property in California.

Live in the Property After You've Inherited it

It's not uncommon for the property to have sentimental value to the decedent's relatives.