One of the most common questions I am asked as a Los Angeles probate lawyer involves property going to the State of California after a person dies who owned property in California. The term applicable when that happens is “escheat”. California Probate Code Section 6404 is the applicable statute.
The term is applied to the transfer of title of a California resident’s property to California when the person dies intestate (without a will) without any other person able to take the property as an heir. For example, California intestacy law provides that when someone dies without a will and is not survived by a spouse, descendants, parents, grandparents, descendants of parents, children or grandchildren of grandparents, or great-grandchildren of grandparents, then the person’s estate will escheat to the state of California.
In California, escheat can also occur when an entity (such as a bank) holds money or property (such as an account in that bank) and the property goes unclaimed. In California, if the owner cannot be located, such property can be revocably escheated to the government.
Avoid this from happening to your property. Speak with an attorney in Los Angeles, call Mitchell A. Port.