Thursday, 4 May 2006
Dáil Eireann Debate
129. Mr. McGinley asked the Minister for Finance if in cases in which persons without dependents die and there is no will in place, there is legislation, current or pending, whereby the estate or moneys of such persons can be donated to local charities; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16697/06]
Minister for Finance (Mr. Cowen): Where a person dies intestate and with no known next-of-kin, the estate of that person passes to the State. Under Section 73 of the Succession Act, 1965, the Minister for Finance has power to waive the States interest in such an estate. A charity could benefit from such a waiver if it could show that it had performed services for the deceased or that the deceased had expressed a wish that the charity should benefit from his estate.
The proceeds of estates which fall to the State under the Succession Act, 1965, are paid into the Intestate Estates Fund Deposit Account. Under Section 36 of the State Property Act, 1954 as amended by Section 28 of the Dormant Accounts Act, 2001 the Minister for Finance may transfer monies from the Intestate Estates Fund Deposit Account into the Dormant Accounts Fund whose proceeds are used for charitable purposes. Any charity, voluntary or community organisation may apply for funding to the Dormant Accounts Fund. In 2006 the Dormant Accounts Fund is due to disburse some €60m to such organisations. Further information about the scheme and its administration may be found on the Pobal website at www.pobal.ie.
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