If your father had a will, the estate will be divided according to the will. If he had life insurance, it will go to the named beneficiary. If he had any accounts or real estate with other people as joint tenants with rights of survivorship, it will pass to those joint tenants. If none of those things apply, then the estate will pass according to your state's law of intestacy. In Arizona, where I am, it would all go to the wife, although they were separated, if still legally married. In Minnesota, the spouse gets the first $150,000. If there is anything more, the spouse gets 50% of that and the descendants share the other 50%.
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