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Are children of deceased 2nd cousins the same degree of kindred as living 2nd cousins?

My 2nd cousin died intestate. She had four 2nd cousins. One died years before her and has two daughters. These daughters are claiming to be the same degree of kindred as the remaining 3 living 2nd cousins. They state that they are entitled to a share of the estate because their mother's share passes down to them. I need to know if this is legal as I am the court appointed personal representative and need to know if they are legal heirs. Thank you for any information that will help.

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