Specific Legacy Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Specific Legacy, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Specific Legacy?

(n) Specific legacy is the gift of a property by specifying the property by its name or identification made by a will to any person or group of persons specified in the will.

History and Meaning of Specific Legacy

Specific legacy is a legal term that has been around for centuries. In common law, it refers to a particular item of personal property that was bequeathed in a will. A specific legacy can be given to anyone, including family members, friends, charities, and institutions. The main characteristic of a specific legacy is that it must be described with sufficient detail to be identified by the executor of the estate when it is distributed.

Examples of Specific Legacy

  1. John left his vintage sports car to his nephew Tom in his will.
  2. Mary left her grandmother’s silver tea set to her daughter Susan in her will.
  3. David bequeathed his first edition of “Ulysses” to his favorite library in his will.
  4. Sarah bequeathed her land in the countryside to the local church in her will.
  5. Richard left his prized stamp collection to his best friend Bob in his will.

Legal Terms Similar to Specific Legacy

  • General Legacy: A gift of a specified sum of money from a will.
  • Demonstrative Legacy: A gift of a specified sum of money that is to be paid out of a specific source or fund.
  • Residuary Legacy: A gift of any remaining assets of an estate after all specific and general legacies have been satisfied.
  • Intestate: When someone dies without leaving a will.
  • Probate: The legal process of distributing a deceased person’s assets according to their will.