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NSW Public Trustee Appointed and Beneficiaries Not Located - Timeframe to Claim?

Discussion in 'Wills and Estate Planning Law Forum' started by RachC, 19 December 2014.

  1. RachC

    RachC Member

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    My father in law passed away suddenly 6 yrs ago, leaving a very simple will dated 1983. Leaving his Estate equally to his 2 adopted children, my sister in law pre deceased her father, but he did not change the will. So her share of the estate would pass to her 4 children. The family became estranged after her death and the children and their father moved to QLD, and have been unable to be located, through numerous searches by our solicitor. To finalise the will, the Executor decided to appoint the Public Trustee for the 4 childrens share of the Estate.
    My real question is, Is there a time frame for that money to sit with the Public Trustee? What happens to it if it is not claimed?
    Is there any possibility of claiming that share of the estate for our 2 children?
     
  2. Sarah J

    Sarah J Well-Known Member

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    There is no time frame that I know of. However, 6 years should be a long enough time. Basically, if you haven't already done so, you need to apply to court for an order to find beneficiaries by other means (e.g. advertise in a newspaper or website you believe the beneficiaries will likely read) and the order will set:
    (a) a particular method of trying to contact the beneficiaries, and
    (b) a time limit for the beneficiaries to contact the personal representative/trustee.
    Once this expires, depending on the court order, you can either distribute as if the beneficiaries has pre-deceased your father-in-law or return to court to such an order.
     
  3. RachC

    RachC Member

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    Thank You Sarah J
    As far as i am aware, our solicitor did newspaper notices, letters to previous know addresses and relatives addresses, so have certainly made every effort to make contact.
    Thank You for your advice :)
     
    Sarah J likes this.

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