4 Types of Probate

4 Types of Probate

With the holiday season approaching, you might be thinking about the best gifts to give your family members. But there is one gift you can start preparing for now to set them up for a more prosperous future.

Proper estate planning can provide for your family long after you are no longer here. And there is no better gift you can give them.

Why not give your family, and yourself, the gift of peace of mind by getting your estate in order, so they’re taken care of long after you’re gone?

4 Types of Probate

With four types of probate in Florida, the process can get lengthy and complicated. The type of probate that is used depends on several factors including: the size of the estate, disagreements between heirs or beneficiaries, the amount of time that has passed, and the types of assets that make up the estate.

If you would like to get to know more about the four types of probate in Florida, we will outline them here.

1. Formal Administration

This type of probate is the most common process used for individuals with larger estates. Formal administration begins with assigning a Personal Representative (PR) who is responsible for identifying and paying the estate’s creditors, debts, taxes, and administrative expenses, then after probate, they transfer the deceased person’s (decedent’s) assets to the beneficiaries.

If the decedent has left a will, the PR will request to submit it to the court. If the will is found to be valid under Florida law, then the PR can follow through with the distribution of the estate as outlined in the decedent’s will.

The entire process can take six months or more to complete.

2. Summary Administration    

A simplified probate process usually used on small estates, summary administration can only be done after the individual has been deceased for over two years and all of the decedent’s creditors have been barred (this means that you can’t be sued for payment, but the debt does not go away).

This type of probate can only be done if the decedent’s assets have a value of less than $75,000, and the entire process can take between one to two months to complete (if there are no creditors to deal with).

There is no PR needed, and it can be completed by submitting a petition to the court with a legally valid will and/or supporting documents. If the petition is approved, an Order for Summary Administration will be issued instructing that the assets be allocated to the beneficiaries.

3. Ancillary Administration

This form of probate is usually used when the decedent owns property in Florida, but died as a primary resident of another state. Since Florida is a popular vacation destination, many people buy vacation homes and ancillary administration is commonly used after the property owner passes away.  Ancillary administration allows the court to transfer rights to the Florida property to out-of-state beneficiaries.

4. Disposition Without Administration

If the decedent left behind a very small estate, disposition without administration is the best way to quickly transfer it to a beneficiary or heir. This form of probate is usually only used to reimburse the person who paid the decedent’s final expenses or burial costs.

In disposition without administration, a beneficiary or heir can simply file a petition with the court to transfer the estate over to themselves. But since this form of probate procedure is so limited, and not without risk, it is best to get the help and guidance of an experienced attorney at Easy Estate Probate.

The probate process can be overwhelming and complicated, but you don’t have to do it alone. An experienced attorney at Easy Estate Probate can walk you through every step from planning to implementation so everything goes smoothly. Contact us today.

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