Read about the inheritance rights of children in Texas

by Robert A. Ray


Natural Children

If there is no will, natural children inherit. What they inherit depends…

Adopted Children

Adopted children inherit like natural children. This includes those adopted by estoppel.

Illegitimate Children

Illegitimate children inherit assuming they can prove their paternity.

Children in Texas Inheritance Law

  1. Biological Children Inherit.
  2. Adopted Children Inherit.
  3. Children in Non-parental Care may Inherit.
  4. Illegitimate Children Inherit.


If a person leaves a valid, non-contested, will, the will determines who inherits the estate. If there is no valid will, then the Texas law of Descent and Distribution determines who inherits. The law favors children. This page provides the reader information about the inheritance rights of children. As you will see below, we discuss the inheritance rights of natural born, adopted and even illegitimate children. There is also a discussion about the inheritance rights of pretermitted children, those born after a will is made by their parent and are not otherwise provided for. And a discussion about those children who were adopted by estoppel or those children who were raised by someone but who were never formally adopted.

Inheritance rights determine who gets property when a person dies intestate (without a valid will.) If there is a valid will that disposes of all of a decedent’s property, then the valid will determines who gets the property. Sometimes, wills are not valid and are contested. Other times, the valid will does not dispose of all of a persons property. In that case, the laws of inheritance rights come in to play for the property not disposed of by the will.

If you have a question about a pending or anticipated lawsuit concerning your rights as a child, use the Contact Us page at the top of the site to see if we can help. Let’s work together!

Links to Other Sources…

Robert Ray

Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization. We handle cases all across Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

Robert Ray is a Texas attorney who handles inheritance disputes

Why Us?

Inheritance disputes involve someone who has taken advantage of the elderly. These cases are complicated and most often, but not always, involve outsiders. We represent you knowing that these inheritance disputes are private and painful family matters. We know this is a stressful time for you. We strive to obtain the quickest and best results possible so that you can get this troubling episode behind you.

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No Forced Heirship In Texas

No Forced Heirship In Texas

Forced heirship is not recognized in Texas for either children or spouses although Texas does have pretermitted child heirship.



Heirship proceeding are different from will contest. If more than four years have passed, it may be difficult, but may not impossible, to gain the inheritance that someone else has that should be the heirs. This is complicated, involving heirship proceedings but there is a possibility that it can be done.

Get In Touch

Get In Touch


Lantana, Texas
In the DFW area


(214) 660-5700

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Contesting a will in Texas

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In the age of Covid-19. we have been thinking of having monthly or bi-monthly, free, Zoom type workshops where participants discuss with us issues that are of interest to them. There would be no agenda, we would discuss areas that the participants wanted to discuss. Participants could attend by computer, tablet or smartphone.

This would be a public Zoom type meeting so nothing personal or confidential should be discussed. Just general questions. Personal or confidential questions should be asked by using the Contact Us tab above.

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