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Category: Estate Law
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Not sure if this is business law or not! Please advise if I

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Not sure if this is business law or not! Please advise if I should direct this elsewhere.
I am trying to claim property from the state of california. Here is the basic situation as far as I can tell. My mothers brother had a life insurance policy worth $13,500 that listed my grandmother (his mother) as the beneficiary. She never claimed the property and it is now being held by the state.

My uncle, never had a wife or kids (family believes he died a virgin) and died before my grandmother. He had a will that left his property to cal state long beach.

My grandmother had 2 children, my mother and said uncle. My grandmother had a trust leaving her estate to my mother and uncle in equal amounts. It also says that if one of the two heirs dies before her, his / her portion should go to their issue. If there is no default issue, the portion should go to the other sibling.

My mother recently passed leaving me as trustee of her estate.

I believe this is clear, the money should have gone to my grandmother when my uncle died, then to my mother and my uncles "issue". Because he had no "issue", even though he had heirs, his money goes back to my mother.

Here is what the state of california is saying.
They are willing to give 1/2 the money to my mothers estate. But if I want the other half I have to provide a death certificate on my uncle (they clearly know he died or there would be no property to begin with) AND I have to sign and notarize that there was no probate or known trust to my uncles estate. I can't legally request a death certificate on my uncle, can I? AND I don't see why my uncle having a will or trust matters as he had no "issue". I will sign a "heirship" form saying he had no "issue".

Am I correct, and if so, how do I convince the state that whether or not my uncle has an Heir is irrelevent because my grandmothers trust clearly says if he dies the money goes to his "issue" and then back to my mother if there are none.

Thank you.
I assume this is complicated and look forward to any follow up questions.

bizlaw :

Hello, I will try to help you. Please remember I just report or interpret the law, so the outcome may not be what you hoped for. The state knows your grandmother is deceased and that your uncle is deceased. They do not know if he had any issue. Did your uncle's estate get probated? Do you know where your uncle died?


I am not sure if the estate was probated. He died in Anaheim California. He had millions of dollars that he left to Cal State Long Beach, it was some type of annuity. He also left a small amount of money to me and my brother. How would I find out if his estate was probated. I would assume it was not probated because I am pretty sure it was all organized in a trust. How do I find these things out. How do you prove somebody didn't have "issue"?


Also how do I get my uncles death certificate AND they said they would give me the money if I would sign a statement (form 13101) that there was no probate. Why can't I just sign the form (certificate of heirship) stating he had no issue?


I just found my uncles trust. It mentions nothing of wife or children or issue. Just leaves 10,000 each to a few family members then the remainder (millions) to cal state long beach. Should I just send this in and call it a day?

bizlaw :

If you know where he died you can obtain a death certificate as you and any siblings are the next of kin to your uncle. Here is link on what you have to do to get the death certificate. It is highly likely that your uncle's estate went through probate. You can check with the probate court in the county in which Anaheim is located (it is probably Los Angeles County but I am not positive of that). If you review the probate records there will be an indication that there was no spouse or children. It sounds like the death certificate and the signed statement by you will get the job done. If I have answered all your questions, please rate my answer excellent as that is how I am compensated. If you have more questions, please let me know. If the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus.

rdgaines and 3 other Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Hi I was just following up to see how you made out. If you have any additional questions or I can help on a different topic let me know.