Estate Recovery Against Annuity

The decedent had purchased an annuity, and had named “Mildred Williams – Friend,” as the beneficiary, but failed to provide a Social Security number or other identifying information for the beneficiary. The decedent also failed to disclose the annuity to Department of Human Services (DHS) when applying for Medicaid. The decedent’s estate requested that the insurance company pay the annuity to the estate in order to pay the estate recovery claim of DHS, but the insurance company instead paid the annuity to the Bureau of Unclaimed Property after it was unable to locate “Mildred Williams.” The Bureau denied a claim for the funds by the estate, and the Commonwealth Court affirmed the denial, but remanded for a determination of whether the Orphans’ Court had entered a valid decree for the payment of the annuity to the estate before the funds were delivered to the Bureau. Estate of Doretha Green v. Bureau of Unclaimed Property, ___ A.3d ___, No. 749 C.D. 2021 (Cmwlth Ct. 9/21/2022).

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