If you have a legal Will, do you have to do an heir search and do you have to provide anyone not in the Will with cash amounts or any other financial info?

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If you have a legal Will, do you have to do an heir search and do you have to provide anyone not in the Will with cash amounts or any other financial info?

My uncle passed away and left everything to his 3 nieces and 1 nephew in his Will. We are told that an heir seach has to be done and any other family located has to be told of all assets and money amounts in bank. Is this correct?

Asked on August 8, 2017 under Estate Planning, Mississippi

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

An heir search is only necessary with a will if the will does not specify the precise heirs by name, but only by relationship or category. E.g. if the  will leaves your uncle's estate to "my neices and nephews" without exactly naming who they are, an heir search would need to be conducted to see if there are any other children of your uncle's siblings (e.g. unacknowledged children or half-siblings) who potentially stand to inherit.


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