escheat


escheat

noun

  1. the reverting of property to the state or some agency of the state, or, as in England, to the lord of the fee or to the crown, when there is a failure of persons legally qualified to inherit or to claim.
  2. the right to take property subject to escheat.

verb (used without object)

  1. to revert by escheat, as to the crown or the state.

verb (used with object)

  1. to make an escheat of; confiscate.

noun

  1. (in England before 1926) the reversion of property to the Crown in the absence of legal heirs
  2. (in feudal times) the reversion of property to the feudal lord in the absence of legal heirs or upon outlawry of the tenant
  3. the property so reverting

verb

  1. to take (land) by escheat or (of land) to revert by escheat
n.

the reverting of land to a king or lord in certain cases, early 14c., from Anglo-French eschete (late 13c.), from Old French eschete “succession, inheritance,” originally fem. past participle of escheoir, from Late Latin *excadere “to fall out,” from Latin ex- “out, away” (see ex-) + cadere “to fall” (see case (n.1)). As a verb, from late 14c. Related: Escheated; escheating.

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