Thank You For Submiting Feedback!
For the purpose of intestate succession by or from an adopted person, the adopted person is a descendant of the adopting parent and is one of the natural kindred of all members of the adopting parent’s family, and is not a descendant of his or her natural parents, nor is he or she one of the kindred of any member of the natural parent’s family or any prior adoptive parent’s family. Fla. Stat. ch. 732.108(1) (1979).
The probate court determined that appellee adopted son was the sole heir of his natural father's estate. Appellee was the natural son of the decedent, but had been adopted by his stepfather. Appellant cousins sought review.
Should the appellee adopted son be considered as the heir of his natural father’s estate?
The appellate court reversed, holding that Fla. Stat. 732.108(1) (1979) applied and provided that adopted children, like appellee, were not to be considered a lineal descendent of their natural parents for the purposes of intestate succession. The court further held that there was no retroactive application of ch. 732.108(1), although the law in effect at the time of appellee's adoption allowed his inheritance by intestate succession. An heir's right to intestate succession vested upon decedent's death. Appellee, therefore, had only an expectancy of inheritance until his natural father died. Thus, any legislation prior to the death of his natural father did not divest any rights to intestate succession because none were vested at that time. Retrospective application of ch. 732.108(1) would have occurred only if the date of death had been prior to the effective date of the statute; ch. 732.108(1) was in effect at the time of decedent's death.