Degree of Kinship

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Degree of kin refers to the closeness of a family member to another family member. This degree becomes important when a person dies intestate because states allocate estate assets based upon the degree of kin. In most states, spouses and children take first, but after that, the estate flows to the next closest level of kin such as parents and siblings. 

[Last updated in June of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]