646 666 9601 [email protected]

A bequest of money or personal property to which title is conveyed under the provisions of a will.

Legal Meaning of Legacy

A bequest of money or personal property to which title is conveyed under the provisions of a will.

A testamentary bequest or gift of commodities or chattels. This term, while properly relevant exclusively to bequests of personal estate, has been expanded to cover real estate and annuities in order to execute the testator’s desire. The word “devise” is more appropriately suited to real estate presents.

If the testator’s purpose is unknown, it must be sought, and any statements expressing the desire to leave or establish a legacy are adequate.

Three Types of Legacies

There are three types of legacies: general, special, and residuary.

General Endowment

A legacy is generic when it is provided in such a way that it does not amount to a particular bequest of a testator’s personal estate, such as a quantity of money in general or out of the testator’s personal estate or the like. A general legacy is a bequest of such an amount or such an item at that time or a command to the executors, if such a thing is not in the testator’s possession at that time, to purchase it for the legatee.

Legacy Particulars

A specific legacy is a bequest of a single object or money defined and distinct from all other things of the same sort; for example, a specific horse, a specific piece of plate, a certain number of years, and the like, which would vest instantly with the executor’s approval. A specific legacy is a bequest of something specified in the testator’s possession at the time of drafting the will, if such a thing is still in the testator’s possession at the time of his death. If it should not be in the possession of the testator, the legatee has no claim. There are legacies of quantity in the form of specific legacies, such as a specified sum of money with a reference to a specific fund for payment.

This kind of legacy is so broad and different in effect from a particular one that if the funds are called in or fail, the legatees will not be deprived of their legacies, but will be able to receive them from the general assets.

Legacy of Residuary

A residuary legacy is a bequest of the testator’s whole personal assets that is not otherwise effectively disposed of by his will.

Legacies are being pursued.

In terms of interest, legacies might be deemed absolute for life or in remainder. When a legacy is provided without conditions and is to vest immediately, it is said to be absolute.

A legacy for life is sometimes given with an executory limitation to another person after the death of the tenant for life; in this case, the tenant for life is entitled to possession of the legacy; however, when it is of specific articles, the first legatee must sign and deliver to the second, an inventory of the chattels expressing that they are in his custody for life only and that afterwards they are to be delivered and remain to the use and benefit of the second leg. A bequest for life, if particular items are included, is a gift of property.

There can be no remainder in personal property in the strict sense of the word, so any future bequest of personal property, whether preceded or not by any particular bequest or limited on a certain or uncertain event, is an executory bequest and is subject to the rules governing that mode of limitation. Any change in the estate, out of which or after which it is restricted, cannot prevent or destroy an executory bequest. And the privilege of executory bequests, which exempts them from being banned or destroyed, is the basis of an unbreakable rule; that the occurrence on which such an interest is authorised to take effect must occur within a life and twenty-one years.

The Legatee has acquired rights.

Legacies may be deemed vested and dependent in terms of the right obtained by the legatee. 1. A vested legacy is one in which the legatee receives a current or future stake in ownership. 2. A contingent legacy is one that is handed to a person with the expectation that no interest would ever vest in him.

Loss of a Legacy

A legacy may be lost due to abatement, ademption, or lapse. The legacy has expired or destroyed when the legatee dies before the testator, before the condition upon which the legacy is bestowed is fulfilled, or before the period at which it is ordered to vest in interest has come.

Payment of Legacies

When it comes to legacies, it’s important to evaluate what fund they’ll be paid from, when they’ll be paid, and to whom. As a general rule, the personal estate is the principal source of funds for the payment of legacies. When the real estate is simply burdened with such claims, the personal assets must be devoted first and foremost to their liquidation.

When legacies are normally provided to those who are not unable to receive them, the payments should be paid at the end of the year after the testator’s death. The executor is not required to pay them sooner, even if the testator may have directed that they be discharged within six months of his death, because the law allows the executor one year from the testator’s death to ascertain and settle his testator’s affairs; and it presumes that at the expiration of that period, and not before, all debts due by the estate have been satisfied and the executor to be then able, properly, to apply the residue among the legatees acc

A bequest under a universal title is one in which a testator bequeaths a set percentage of all his immovables or all his movables, or a fixed proportion of all his immovables or all his movables.

Every legacy that is not defined as universal legacies or legacies under a universal title is a legacy under a specific title.