If an heir dies while a Will is in probate, does the heir’s beneficiary get a part of the estate?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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If an heir dies while a Will is in probate, does the heir’s beneficiary get a part of the estate?

My dad passed away about a year ago and left a Will stating that he was leaving everything to his 4 children, and if 1 of them predeceased him, then that child’s children would receive the deceased’s child’s fair share. Now, 1 of those 4 children passed away on while the Will is still in probate. Does this mean that now the 3

remaining children will share the estate, or does the deceaced child’s children get the 1/4 portion of the estate?

Asked on December 12, 2018 under Estate Planning, Alabama


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

So long as the benefciary outlived the testator (i.e. the person who made the Will), then the beneficiairy is entitle to their inheritance. It makes no difference if the beneficiary then dies before the close of probate. So in this case, the deceased benefciairy's share will be distributed as per the terms of their Will. If they had no Will, then it will be distributed pursuant to state law (in this case to the children and the surviving spouse, if any). 

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