First decide which procedure to use. Figuring out if you have to go to probate court depends on many issues, like the amount of money involved, the type of property involved, and who is claiming the property. You can watch a very short presentation on Probate Options.
The chart below lists the three types of probate procedures and their different requirements.
|Affidavit for Collection of Personal Property (no court case is needed)||Informal Probate||Formal Probate|
The estate must meet all of these conditions:
Learn more about using the Affidavit for Collection of Personal Property of Decedent.
The estate may proceed as an informal probate if:
If you do not meet all of these requirements you will usually need to petition for formal probate.
Learn more about Informal Probate.
If the estate is small enough, it may qualify as a “small estate” which has fewer requirements than a regular informal probate. Learn more about Small Estates.
The estate will proceed as a formal probate if:
These are the most common reasons. You may also want to open a formal probate for other reasons such as doubts about the person's death or finding a new Will. If you think that you need to open a formal probate, it is a good idea to talk to a probate lawyer.
Learn more about Formal Probate.
| Rev. 18 December 2017
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