Q: No heirs to an abandoned home.
I have lived in this neighborhood for 6 years now and the home in front of mine is my neighbors daughter who passed a long time ago. I'm assuming there are no heirs but i'd like the property to be mine. How do I go about asking my neighbor about maybe getting the home?
A: It may not be so simple. The Puerto Rico Civil Code states the order of an intestate succession: if the deceased owner left no descendants, and had no spouse, it would go to the deceased parents. If these are no longer living, it would go to the deceased siblings, nephews, and nieces, if none are living or exist, it will go to the nearest relative up to the sixth degree; after which, the estate would revert to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (through the University of Puerto Rico). Any chance you may have of acquiring the property would have to entail deep research on your part to determine in the Property Registry who the owner is. Then, through an attorney, procure a death certificate from the demographics registry (which may be difficult if you do not know the exact date of death and the deceased's parents). Have you knowledge regarding any relatives of the deceased daughter?
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