What Happens To My Stuff When I Die? (Singapore Edition)
Updated: Aug 23
Someone will inherit it. But the question is, who?
After you die, your family or next-of-kin will go through a legal process called probate and administration to get a grant from the court that gives them official rights to manage your stuff and distribute your possessions.
If you don’t have a will, your next-of-kin will first need to be appointed as an administrator (the person the court approves to distribute your assets), get a grant of letters of administration, and your assets will be given out based on intestacy law.
(Note: This article is intended for non-Muslims. For Muslims, check out
What Happens If I Die Without a Will?
If you die without a will, that means you have died intestate. Your assets will be given out according to the default distribution set out by the Intestate Succession Act, also known as Singapore's intestacy law.
Below is a chart of who gets what under Singapore’s intestacy law:
Below is the same representation but in table form of who gets what under Singapore’s intestacy law:
Why Do I Need a Will?
If the law has already planned it out for me, why do I still need a will?
You can deviate from the default distribution using a will. Even if your ideal distribution is the same as the intestacy law, the probate and administration process is generally faster, cheaper and easier for your next-of-kin with a will than without a will.
Let’s take a look at the advantages of having a will:
A prolonged probate or administration process can take a toll on your family. Whether you have a will or not, your family will generally have to go through the probate or administration process. If everything you own is less than SG$50,000 in value, your family can potentially apply to the Public Trustee’s Office to handle the estate without going through probate.
Write a will now.
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Disclaimer: Nothing in this article or site should be construed as providing legal advice or advice of any sort. The information provided are general in nature and may become inaccurate over time. Please consult a professional for advice.
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