What is Advancement?

Legal Definition
An advancement is a gift made during a donor’s life to a family member, usually when the donor anticipates his own death. The value of the advancement is included in the calculation of the net probate estate when the donor dies. Therefore, the advancement has the effect of reducing the share of the probate estate that the family member receives by intestate succession. The primary purpose of an advancement is to further the equal treatment of heirs within the applicable intestacy statute’s distribution pattern.
Legal Definition
That which is given by a father to his child or presumptive heir, by anticipation of whathe might inherit. 6 Watts, R. 87; 17 Mass. R. 358; 16 Mass. R. 200; 4 S. & R. 333; 11 John. R. 91; Wright, R. 339. See also Coop Just. 515, 575; 1 Tho. Co. Lit. 835, 6; 3 Do. 345, 348; Toll. 301; 5 Vez. 721; 2 Rob. on Wills, 128; Wash. C. C. Rep. 225; 4 S. & R. 333; 1 S. & R. 312; 3 Conn. Rep. 31; and post Collatio bonorum.

2. To constitute an advancement by the law of England, the gift must be made by the father and not by another, not even by the mother. 2 P. Wms. 856. In Pennsylvania a gift of real or personal estate by the father or mother may be an advancement. 1 S. & R. 427; Act 19 April 1794, 9; Act 8 April, 1833, 16. There are in the statute laws of the several states provisions relative to real and personal estates, similar in most respects to those which exist in the English statute of distribution, concerning an advancement to a child. If any child of the intestate has been advanced by him by settlement, either out of the real or personal estate, or both, equal or superior to the amount in value of the share of such child which would be due from the real and personal estate, if no such advancementhad been made, then such child and his descendants, are excluded from any share in the real or personal estate of the intestate.

3. But if the advancement be not equal, then such child, and in case of his death, his descendants, are entitled to receive, from the real and personal estate, sufficient to make up the deficiency, and no more.

4. The advancement, is either express or implied. As to what is an implied advancement, see 2 Fonb. Eq. 121; 1 Supp. to Ves. Jr. 84; 2 lb. 57; 1 Vern. by Raithby, 88, 108, 216; 5 Ves. 421; Bac. Ab. h. t.; 4 Kent, Com. 173.

5. A debt due by a child to his father differs from an advancement. In case of a debt, the money due may be recovered by action for the use of the estate, whether any other property be left by the deceased or not; whereas, an advancement merely bars the child's right to receive any part of his father's estate, unless he brings into hotch pot the property advanced. 17 Mass. R. 93, 359. See, generally, 17 Mass. R. 81, 356; 4 Pick. R. 21; 4 Mass. R. 680; 8 Mass. R. 143; 10. Mass. R. 437; 5 Pick. R. 527; 7 Conn. R. 1; 6 Conn. R. 355; 5 Paige's R. 318; 6 Watts' R. 86, 254, 309; 2 Yerg. R. 135; 3 Yerg. R. 95; Bac. Ab. Trusts, D; Math. on Pres. 59; 5 Hayw. 137; 11 John. 91; l Swanst. 13; 1 Ch. Cas. 58; 3 Conn. 31; 15 Ves. 43, 50; U. S. Dig. h. t.; 6 Whart. 370; 4 S. & R. 333; 4 Whart. 130, 540; 5 Watts, 9; 1 Watts & Serg. 390; 10 Watts, R. 158; 5 Rawle, 213; 5 Watts, 9, 80; 6 Watts & Serg. 203. The law of France in respect to advancements is stated at length in Morl. Rep. de Jurisp. Rapport a succession.
-- Bouviers Law Dictionary
Legal Definition
Money or property given by a father to his child or presumptive heir or expended by the former for the latter's benefit, by way of anticipation of the share which the child will inherit in the father's estate and intended to be deducted therefrom. It is the latter circumstance which differentiates an advancement from a gift or a loan. Grattan v. Grattan, 18 111. 167, 65 Am. Dec. 726; Beringer v. Lutz, 188 Pa. 364, 41 Atl. 643; Daugherty v. Rogers, 119 Ind. 254, 20 N. E. 779, 3 L. R. A. 847; Hattersley v. Bissett, 51 N. J. Eq. 507, 20 Atl. 187, 40 Am. St. Rep. 532; Chase v. Ewing, 51 Barb. (N. Y.) 597; Osgood v. Breed, 17 Mass. 356; Nicholas v. Nicholas, 100 Va. 660, 42 S. E. 669; Moore v. Freeman, 50 Ohio St. 592, 35 N. E 502; Appeal of Porter, 94 Pa. 332; Bissell v. Bissell, 120 Iowa, 127, 94 N. W. 465; In re Allen's Estate, 207 Pa. 325, 56 Atl. 928.

Advancement, in its legal acceptation, does not involve the idea of obligation or future liability to answer. It is a pure and irrevocable gift made by a parent to a child in anticipation of such child's future share of the parent's estate. Appeal of Yundt, 13 Pa. 580, 53 Am. Dec. 496.

An advancement is any provision by a parent made to and accepted by a child out of his estate, either in money or property, during his life-time, over and above the obligation of the parent for maintenance and education. Code Ga. 1882, § 2579. An "advancement by portion," within the meaning of the statute, is a sum given by a parent to establish a child in life, (as by starting him in business,) or to make a provision for the child, (as on the marriage of a daughter.) L. R. 20 Eq. 155.
-- Black's Law Dictionary
Legal Definition
Whatever is given by a parent to a child as a portion of the child’s inheritance. See 40 Am. St. Rep. 532.
-- Ballentine's Law Dictionary