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Our panel of 89 professional philosophers has responded to

Question of the day

My own view is that there is nothing wrong, per se (in itself) with the inheritance of wealth. Assuming that a person has gained wealth through just means (or no injustice) it seems that it should be within that person's (moral / legal) rights to make another person (a child, for example) the benefactor of such wealth. This right seems to me to be part of the right of persons to give gifts to those they choose. Cases in which the giving and receiving of inherited wealth seem to involve special factors such as: the giver acquired the wealth unjustly; the receiver of the wealth did something unjust (such as murder his gift-giving aunt in order to benefit from her will); the state may have an interest in limiting the amount of inheritance a person or family may control in order to prevent a harmful oligarchy or in order to not allow a handful of families to have monopolizing, dynastic power. You might look at Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State, and Utopia on the transfer of property.