All assets owned by an individual at death, to be distributed according to the individual's will (or a court ruling if there is no will).  All the assets a person possesses at the time of death.  Property left standing at death. All the money and property owned by a particular person, esp. at death: in his will, he divided his estate between his wife and daughter.
The degree, quantity, nature, and extent of interest that a person has in real and personal property. When used in connection with probate proceedings, the term encompasses the total property that is owned by a decedent prior to the distribution of that property in accordance with the terms of a will, or when there is no will, by the laws of inheritance in the state of domicile of the decedent. 
From "collective assets of a dead person or debtor" is from 1830.