If you die without a Will you are said to have died ‘intestate.’ This means that instead of your assets being distributed in a way that you have chosen, there is a formula that determines how your assets are to be distributed and in what proportions. This can mean that your family heirlooms, family pets, savings and property may end up in the hands of family members contrary to your wishes.
The law tells us that to have a claim on an Estate you must:
Blended families and step-families are very common these days.
It is possible for a former partner to make a claim on your Estate, if there are factors that warrant that claim. The case of Lodin v Lodin; Estate of Dr Mohammad Masoud Lodin  NSWSC 10 demonstrates what can happen when a former partner makes an Estate claim.
When you think of wills your mind is probably filled with the image of a sweet elderly couple.