specific bequest

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Specific bequest refers to any specific property given to individuals in a will. The key to this phrase is that the property is unmistakable and the intended recipient is also without question. For example, John bequeathed his house at 123 Property Street to his daughter Lela. Problems arise during probate when a will contains gifts that are not specifically bequeathed because either the asset is uncertain or the intended recipient is questionable. For example, John in his will bequests his house to his daughter; this language could be a problem if John has multiple houses and multiple daughters. 

[Last updated in July of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]