What happens to my mother's recent inheritance after her own death?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 24, 2016
Amp1 asked...

My mother was named in her sisters will but sadly has died just days before her sisters probate date, what happens to her inheritance, does it go to her estate ?

Expert Answers

Barbara Repa, a Caring.com senior editor, is an attorney, a journalist specializing in aging issues, and the author of Your Rights in the Workplace (Nolo), now in its 10th edition.

What happens to the gift to your mother may depend on two things.

The first is whether your aunt's will provided directions for what should happen to it. Most wills do address what should happen to property in case a beneficiary does not survive to take it"”and they do that in all different ways. For example, some include a "survivorship clause" specifying that a beneficiary must survive the willmaker by a specific time period before being legally entitled to take the gift. Some wills name back-up takers for specific property. Some specify that the property should simply be distributed according to a "clean-up" or residuary clause.

If there are directions in the will, they control.

If the will remains mum on a back-up plan, then check the controlling state's law. You should be able to find it by searching for the state name and "probate" and "lapse" or "anti-lapse."