Descent and Distribution – Ancestral Property – Exclusion of Next of Kin Other Than Half Bloods

The decedent died intestate owning land which he had inherited from his father. His only next of kin were four blood aunts and uncles on his mother’s side, and three blood aunts and uncles on his father’s side. The paternal aunts and uncles contended that the land descended to them alone by virtue of a section of the Alabama code, which provides: “There is no distinction made between the whole and the half blood in the same degree, unless the inheritance came to the intestate by descent, devise or gift, from or of some one of his ancestors; in which case all those who are not of the blood of such ancestor are excluded from the inheritance as against those of the same degree.” The lower court held that all the next of kin took equally. On appeal, held, affirmed. The “unless” clause of the statute can only be a qualification on the rights of half blood collateral kindred. The aunts and uncles are all of the whole blood of the decedent and share equally. Caffee v. Thompson, (Ala. 1955) 81 S. (2d) 358.