What happens if there are 6 siblings listed as beneficiaries listed in a Will but 2 predeceased the testator?

The Will states that if anyone predeceases the mother by 120 hours, they are not recipients; 2 of the siblings died a year before the mother. Do their children get their part of the inheritance or does it get split between the 4 remaining children?

Asked on October 17, 2013 under Estate Planning, Virginia


Nathan Wagner / Law Office of Nathan Wagner

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

Each state has different rules on how to interpret wills. Courts generally try to follow the intentions of the person whose estate is being distributed. The court would probably first look at the rest of the will to try to figure out what your mother intended to happen to the 2 deceased siblings' shares. In California, the 2 siblings' shares would probably be distributed to the 4 surviving siblings, assuming that your mother's will says no more than the siblings "are not recipients", as you have described. You should talk to a local probate lawyer, to find out what the law is in your state. 

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