Let's say a will is written specifying that $50,000 is to go to each of 4 grandchildren and the remainder of the estate is to be split between the 2 surviving children. However what if the bulk of the assets are in a P.O.D. account that goes directly to the 2 children, such that the remaining assets are insufficient to pay the grandchildren's shares ? Do the grandchildren just get less, or are the children obligated to pay some of the money received via the P.O.D. account to the grandchildren to make up the $50,000 per grandchild ?
2 Answers from Attorneys
POD accounts are not controlled by the Will, but by their registration. If the probate assets (assets controlled by the Will) are less than the aggregate specific bequests, each recipient of part of the specific bequest gets less. Of course the parents may make up any difference from their share of the POD accounts, but this will be purely voluntary.