Money left to first cousins, what if some are deceased?

Discussion in 'Wills, inheritances and gifts' started by random10, 14 Apr 2017.

  1. random10

    random10 Frequent Poster

    So, I'm a bit dubious about this but here it goes. My mam got a phone call to say a distant relative had passed away and her and her first cousins were the nearest relatives. A lady that they have never heard of apparently died in Dublin and she would be their first cousin once removed. Mams first cousin was tracked down by a solicitor in England doing a family tree search? So anyway say it is true all the first cousins are entitled. What if some first cousins have passed away , do their family get or lose their share. What if they had only died recently? Also, how long is this lady possibly passed away. if it is true I find it so so sad that her closest relative was first cousin once removed
  2. Thirsty

    Thirsty Frequent Poster

    It depends on how the will is written.

    As the Solicitor to confirm the details on writing and do a cross check yourself.

    If probate is completed the will is a public record and you can get a copy.
  3. Gordon Gekko

    Gordon Gekko Frequent Poster

    The deceased appears to have died intestate, hence the search.

    In such circumstances, any benefit flows down to each cousin's family.

    e.g. my brother dies intestate and my other brother and I were his next of kin, but I've died. My kids get my share

    Good for them, but not so good for me, what with being dead and all.
    wednesday, rob oyle and random10 like this.
  4. noproblem

    noproblem Frequent Poster

    There was a very good slot on the Sean O Rourkw show the other morning on this very topic, try and find it on rte playback if you can.
    random10 likes this.
  5. random10

    random10 Frequent Poster

    And there's no time limit, one of the first cousins is dead 15 years his family still get a share?
  6. Bronte

    Bronte Frequent Poster

    This doesn't sound right, children get their deceased parents share in strict circumstances. As far as I am aware it doesn't work for cousins children.

    If the nearest living relatives are first cousins, alive, they each take an equal share, but the children of deceased first cousins get nothing.
  7. Vanilla

    Vanilla Frequent Poster

    Why a UK solicitor for an Irish estate? Was there property in the UK? Or was it one of the probate genealogy firms rather than a solicitor?
  8. Vanessa

    Vanessa Frequent Poster

    It is a complicated issue. I wouldnt agree that tehe family of a deceased cousin get nothing. I think any bequest goes to the deceased cousin estate to be distributed as per their will.
    I am open to correction though
  9. random10

    random10 Frequent Poster

    I don't know much yet. A first cousin of my mams rang to tell her this and said a solicitor in England would be writing to her in two to three weeks. I'll keep you posted
  10. DeeKie

    DeeKie Frequent Poster

    I'm not a probate lawyer, but you need to know what jurisdiction's rules apply to the estate. If an English solicitor has been on, maybe their rules apply.
  11. Bronte

    Bronte Frequent Poster


    If a person dies without having made a will or if the will is invalid for whatever reason, that person is said to have died "intestate". If there is a valid will, but part of it is invalid then that part is dealt with as if there was an intestacy. The rules for division of property on intestacy are as follows:

    If the deceased is survived by

    • spouse/civil partner but no children - spouse/civil partner gets entire estate
    • spouse/civil partner and children - spouse/civil partner gets two-thirds, one-third is divided equally between children (if a child has already died his/her children take a share)
    • parents, no spouse/civil partner or children - divided equally or entirely to one parent if only one survives.
    • children, no spouse/civil partner - divided equally between children (as above)
    • brothers and sisters only - shared equally, the children of a deceased brother or sister take the share (Edit by Bronte, this does not apply in the case of cousins)
    • nieces and nephews only - divided equally between those surviving
    • other relatives - divided equally between nearest equal relationship (Edit by Bronte, this would be equal cousins so would appear to fit the bill here - but I am assuming it's much the same under English law)
    • no relatives - the state
  12. thedaddyman

    thedaddyman Frequent Poster

    This sadly does happen from time to time. I recall years ago (and bear in mind legislation may have changed since then and each circumstance is different) a bachelor first cousin of my father died and the estate was divided between the surviving first cousins alive at the time of death and the spouses of any deceased first cousins. However where both a cousin and spouse was deceased, their share went to the other first cousins and not to their children. I remember being at the funeral with my Dad and the cousin's solicitor was basically walking around the graveyard after the funeral trying to identify cousins.

    If the deceased was in the UK, there is a state list of such estates called Bona Vacantia, it might be worth having a look
  13. mathepac

    mathepac Frequent Poster

    Last edited: 18 Apr 2017
    The OP only has 2nd or 3rd hand information and no official confirmation from an unimpeacheable source and we don't know yet what jurisdiction's laws apply.

    However, as a 1st cousin once removed is the child of one of the cousins, (e.g. my father's 1st cousin is my 1st cousin once removed, whose children in turn are my 2nd cousins) the informant would appear to contradict which might suggest laws other than Irish laws are at work here. But again it is all speculative at this stage. More definitive info needed IMO.
    Last edited: 18 Apr 2017
  14. trasneoir

    trasneoir Frequent Poster

    It's worth noting that "I'm a stranger who might have money for you" is a the most common way to start a 419 scam.
    Check their bona-fides carefully before handing over any personal data or money.
  15. DirectDevil

    DirectDevil Frequent Poster

    In relation to successors of deceased beneficiaries, does that beneficiaries entitlement not percolate down to their successors for distribution under the per stirpes rule ? A dies. B is a beneficiary of A's estate. B has predeceased A. Do B's beneficiaries inherit proportionately per stirpes ?

    I note that deceased is intestate here but I did see a will once where a stipulation of inheritance was that the beneficiaries had to be alive at the time of the testators death !
  16. random10

    random10 Frequent Poster

    So my understanding is that a lady died in 2002 a first cousin once removed and my mother and her first cousins are nearest relatives. My mother and her first cousins didn't know this woman existed because their parents mother died when her kids were very young three and five so they didn't know that side of the family very well. The genealogist doing the research said he's hit a brick wall that there are two cousins he cannot trace and there's nothing more he can do. He said the woman's house was sold and the money is in an account. So my question. Is let's say there are ten people entitled to estate and only eight can be found. Could my mother go to a solicitor and claim one tenth of the estate and then if the two others never show up that money goes back to state. How long before an unclaimed estate goes bAck to state
  17. Clamball

    Clamball Frequent Poster

    I recall something similar for the estate of a US cousin who died intestate. It all went to the first cousins, but only one of them was still alive when the guy died. So the solicitor came from the US and had a meeting with all the cousins (he asked for a representative of each family but sure everyone turned up). It turned out that since one of the cousins was still alive at the date of death of the American cousin everything went to her. She had died in the meantime so it all distributed as per her will. Once the solicitor had figured out who was the inheriting family, he asked them to sign an agreement with him that his firm would get a % of the estate as a finders fee. Everyone was pretty happy with the outcome.
  18. Bronte

    Bronte Frequent Poster

    Random is it per UK law? Hard to get an answer on here on that. Can you clarify first cousin once removed?