escheat

noun
es·​cheat | \ is-ˈchēt How to pronounce escheat (audio) , ish-ˈchēt \

Definition of escheat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : escheated property
2a : the reversion of lands in English feudal law to the lord of the fee when there are no heirs capable of inheriting under the original grant
b : the reversion of property to the crown in England or to the state in the U.S. when there are no legal heirs

escheat

verb
escheated; escheating; escheats

Definition of escheat (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cause to revert by escheat

intransitive verb

: to revert by escheat

Other Words from escheat

Verb

escheatable \ is-​ˈchē-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce escheat (audio) , ish-​ \ adjective

Examples of escheat in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Another thing to keep in mind is that escheat doesn't change your tax obligations. Charles Read, Forbes, 16 Apr. 2021 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 The state Treasury Department collects unclaimed deposits, known as escheat, with 75% of the money going to the state's Cleanup and Redevelopment Trust Fund and the other 25% returned to retailers. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In Texas, unlike many other states, unclaimed property does not generally escheat to the state. Wesley E. Wright, Houston Chronicle, 16 Mar. 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'escheat.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of escheat

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for escheat

Noun

Middle English eschete, from Anglo-French, reversion of property, from escheir to fall, devolve, from Vulgar Latin *excadēre, from Latin ex- + Vulgar Latin *cadēre to fall, from Latin cadere — more at chance

Learn More About escheat

Time Traveler for escheat

Time Traveler

The first known use of escheat was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near escheat

eschatology

escheat

escheator

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for escheat

Cite this Entry

“Escheat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/escheat. Accessed 22 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for escheat

escheat

noun
es·​cheat | \ is-ˈchēt How to pronounce escheat (audio) \

Legal Definition of escheat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : escheated property
2 : the reversion of property to the state upon the death of the owner when there are no heirs

escheat

transitive verb

Legal Definition of escheat (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause to revert by escheat

intransitive verb

: to revert by escheat

Other Words from escheat

escheatable adjective

History and Etymology for escheat

Noun

Anglo-French eschete reversion of property, from Old French escheoite accession, inheritance, from feminine past participle of escheoir to fall (to), befall, ultimately from Latin ex- out + cadere to fall

More from Merriam-Webster on escheat

Nglish: Translation of escheat for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of escheat for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about escheat

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Eponyms: Words Named After People

How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!