What happens if the beneficiary and executor of a Will dies before the testator?

Father passed. Will states son is executor and is to receive all assets. Son has passed before father and Will was not changed. Father has a living daughter but she is not in Will. Deceased son has 2 daughters. Who is the next of kin?

Asked on March 26, 2016 under Estate Planning, Hawaii

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

First of all, most states typically name a "contingent" executor in the event that the named executor cannot serve; if it doesn't then the probate court will appoint a new executor (usually a family member or close friend).
Secondly, an child can legally be disinherited, although most states require that the disinhertance be specifically stated in the Will.
Thirdly, in the case of when a child predeceaces their parent, typically the deceased child's children (i.e. the grandchildren of the person making the Will) inherit in place of their deceased parent; this means that they are entitled to evenly split what their parent was to have inherited. 
At this point, you should consult directly with a local probate attorney; they can best advise you of your rights.


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