Harrisburg, PA asked in Estate Planning for Pennsylvania

Q: In Pennsylvania do heirs receive inher. of a will if a bene. dies after the testator but before receiving their inher.?

I submitted this question earlier and received two different answers from two different lawyers. One said, Yes, if the beneficiary died after the person in the origional will died. (Which is the case). The first person's will went to probate, is still in process after 1 1/2 years and no distribution of the inheritance as of yet. In the meantime one of the beneficiaries has died. Will the beneficiary's heirs still receive the beneficiary's portion? The other lawyer answered and said only if "per stirpes" was added as wording in the origional person's will (Which it was not). But they also stated that this comes into play if the beneficiary does not survive or predeceases the origional person who wrote the will. This is not the case in my question. The origional person (testator) died over 1 1/2 years ago and the beneficiary just died a few months ago. Will that beneficiary named in the orig. will (or in this case - the heirs to that beneficiary) still receive their portion?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Scoblionko
Mark Scoblionko
  • Allentown, PA
  • Licensed in Pennsylvania

A: Please reference my original answer, which I believe to be correct. The presence or absence of a reference to per stripes is relevant only if the beneficiary died before the Testator, which, in this case, he/she did not.

Thus, as I said originally, based on the facts you presented, the share of the deceased beneficiary should pass to his/her estate.

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