Bill Text: NJ S2705 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Permits certain non-blood relatives to have claim to estate of person with no will who died, when person has no spouse or partner or blood heirs, and estate transferred to State as unclaimed property.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 2-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2018-06-11 - Introduced in the Senate, Referred to Senate Judiciary Committee [S2705 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-S2705-Introduced.html

SENATE, No. 2705

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED JUNE 11, 2018

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  STEPHEN M. SWEENEY

District 3 (Cumberland, Gloucester and Salem)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Permits certain non-blood relatives to have claim to estate of person with no will who died, when person has no spouse or partner, or blood heirs, and estate transferred to State as unclaimed property.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

 


An Act concerning claims to an intestate decedent's estate that has escheated to the State as unclaimed property, and amending R.S.46:30B-77.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    R.S.46:30B-77 is amended to read as follows:

     46:30B-77.  Filing claim; another state excluded. a. A person, excluding another state, claiming an interest in any property paid or delivered to the administrator may file with the administrator a claim on a form prescribed by the administrator and verified by the claimant.

     b.    The administrator shall allow the claim of persons asserting entitlement as heirs to the property of an intestate decedent paid or delivered to the administrator pursuant to [N.J.S.3B:5-5] P.L.2001, c.109 (C.3B:5-5.1 et al.) only upon receipt of (1) substantial credible evidence of heirship, (2) satisfactory evidence that a diligent investigation to locate all heirs of the decedent has been concluded, (3) the names, last known addresses, and a description of the relationships of all of the heirs of the decedent discovered as a result of that investigation, or otherwise, and (4) a release and refunding bond or other instrument satisfactory to the administrator, providing the administrator and the State with full indemnity for claims by other heirs of the decedent.  The administrator shall make payment or delivery as otherwise provided in this article to the heirs in shares as prescribed in N.J.S.3B:5-3 [through N.J.S.3B:5-14] et seq.

     The administrator shall review, in the absence of any claim of persons asserting entitlement as heirs to the property of an intestate decedent paid or delivered to the administrator, the claim of persons asserting entitlement as the relatives of the spouse, partner in a civil union couple, or domestic partner who predeceased the decedent while married to, or in a civil union or domestic partnership with, the decedent.  Only the following relatives of the predeceased spouse or partner may present a claim: the parents or parent if only one survives; any descendant of the parents or either parent; the paternal grandparents or grandparent if only one survives, and the maternal grandparents or grandparent if only one survives; and any descendant of the paternal grandparents or either grandparent if only one survives, and any descendant of the maternal grandparents or either grandparent if only one survives.  The administrator shall allow the claim of persons asserting entitlement as relatives only upon receipt of (1) substantial credible evidence of the marriage, civil union, or domestic partnership between the decedent and the

predeceased spouse or partner of the decedent, (2) substantial credible evidence of the relationship to the predeceased spouse or partner, (3) satisfactory evidence that a diligent investigation to locate all intestate heirs of the decedent has been concluded and no heirs were located, and (4) a release and refunding bond or other instrument satisfactory to the administrator, providing the administrator and the State with full indemnity for claims by heirs of the intestate decedent or other relatives of the predeceased spouse or partner.  The administrator shall make payment or delivery as otherwise provided in this article to the relatives as if they were the heirs of the intestate decedent in shares as prescribed in N.J.S.3B:5-4 et seq.

     If the holder has filed an inaccurate or incomplete report and an owner makes a claim for the return of the property and the administrator is unable to determine if the property was reported or delivered, then the holder shall either file an amended accurate and complete report within 120 days of notice by the administrator or directly pay the owner and thereafter make a claim for reimbursement in accordance with R.S.46:30B-62.  It shall be the holder's burden to establish that the owner's property was delivered with the original report.

(cf: P.L.2002, c.35, s.51)

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately, and apply to any estate of an intestate decedent for which the property of the estate was paid or delivered to the administrator before the effective date and remains, on or after that date, under the custody of the State pursuant to the "Uniform Unclaimed Property Act," R.S.46:30B-1 et seq., or paid or delivered to the administrator and held by the State as custodian thereof pursuant to that act on or after the effective date.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill would permit certain non-blood relatives (e.g., relatives by marriage) to have a claim to an intestate decedent's estate, when the decedent was predeceased by a spouse, partner in a civil union couple, or domestic partner and has no blood heirs or step-child to whom the estate can be distributed under the laws of intestacy. 

     Under current law, when there is no living spouse or partner and otherwise no blood heirs or step-child to receive the property from an intestate decedent's estate, that property is paid or delivered to the State as unclaimed property and held pursuant to the "Uniform Unclaimed Property Act," R.S.46:30B-1 et seq.  Unless a blood heir or step-child is later located, the property will remain under the State's custody in perpetuity.  This bill would instead allow any estate without such heirs that was transferred to the State to be claimed by the following persons, who are related to the intestate decedent's former spouse, partner in a civil union couple, or domestic partner, and are thus non-blood relatives of the decedent:

     -      the parents or parent if only one survives;

     -      any descendant of the parents or either parent;

     -      the paternal grandparents or grandparent if only one survives, and the maternal grandparents or grandparent if only one survives; and;

     -      any descendant of the paternal grandparents or either grandparent if only one survives, and any descendant of the maternal grandparents or either grandparent if only one survives.

     These classes of non-blood claimants effectively "mirror" those classes of blood heirs to whom an estate may be distributed by intestacy pursuant to N.J.S.3B:5-4 et seq.

     The State's administrator for unclaimed property would allow the claim of persons asserting entitlement as non-blood relatives only upon receipt of (1) substantial credible evidence of the marriage, civil union, or domestic partnership between the decedent and the predeceased spouse or partner of the decedent, (2) substantial credible evidence of the relationship to the predeceased spouse or partner, (3) satisfactory evidence that a diligent investigation to locate all intestate blood heirs or step-children of the decedent has been concluded and none were located, and (4) a release and refunding bond or other instrument satisfactory to the administrator, providing the administrator and the State with full indemnity for subsequent claims by blood heirs, step-children, or non-blood relatives of the intestate decedent.  The administrator would make payment or delivery of the property held by the State to the non-blood relatives as if they were the equivalent class of blood heirs of the intestate decedent in shares as prescribed in the laws of intestacy.

     The bill would take effect immediately, and apply to any estate of an intestate decedent for which the property of the estate was paid or delivered to the State administrator before the effective date and remains, on or after that date, under the custody of the State pursuant to the "Uniform Unclaimed Property Act," R.S.46:30B-1 et seq., or paid or delivered to the administrator and held by the State as custodian thereof pursuant to that act on or after the effective date.

feedback