Example: “To A for life, then to B’s children” and B has no children, or “then to B if she outlives A.” In both these cases it is not enough for A to die, (i., B must either have children or outlive A) for the estate to become possessory. A reversion in the grantor is automatically created by the conveyance of a contingent remainder because of the possibility that the contingency will not be met (e., B predeceases A). If the condition is not met, the remainder is extinguished. If the condition is met, the remainder vests and the grantor’s reversion is extinguished. Example: More than one contingency. “To A for life, then to the lineal heirs of B,” and B has no children yet. (Lineal heirs are children, grandchildren, etc.) The children must be born, but they also must survive B to become his heirs. (Note that this contingent remainder vests and becomes possessory simultaneously, if at all). Vested or Contingent? Whether a remainder is vested or contingent is often a difficult question, and frequently depends on technical distinctions. A few rules do exist to facilitate this determination. Grammatical construction. If the condition is contained in the clause which creates the interest, then the interest will be interpreted as a contingent remainder. If the condition is stated in a clause separate from that which creates the interest, then it will be construed as a vested remainder subject to a condition subsequent. Reversion. A contingent remainder creates a reversion in the grantor. A vested remainder creates an executory interest in a third party.
Example: “To A for life, remainder to B, but if B dies before A then to C.