Simplified California Probate Rules for Small Estates
As of 2020, California probate rules define a small estate as one valued at $166,250 or less. To inherit personal property (including money) or real estate from a small estate, you do not need to go through all the formalities of probate. Instead, you can use one of these simplified probate alternatives.
- To inherit a real estate property (a house or a piece of land) valued at $55,425 or less, California probate rules allow you to file an Affidavit re: Real Property of Small Value at the courthouse in your county. The waiting period before you can start this process is six months after the previous owner’s death. No hearing is required.
- To inherit a real estate property valued at more than $55,425 but less than $166,250, California probate rules provide an alternative to full probate. Simply file a Petition to Determine Succession to Real Property in your county’s courts.
- If the property you are trying to inherit comes from an estate that does not include any real estate properties, under California probate rules you can simply draft an Affidavit to Receive Property and present it to the institutions that currently control the assets you are trying to get transferred to you. For example, if the deceased person had accounts at several banks, you can just prepare one affidavit and present it at each bank.
If the estate is valued at more than $166,250, then full probate is your only choice under California probate rules. If the estate is small but the personal representative has already opened it for probate, then you must wait until the probate process finishes, and you will get your inheritance the old-fashioned way when the estate settles, per California’s probate rules.
A People’s Choice is the Affordable Choice for Probate and Simplified Probate Alternatives
There is no need to hire a lawyer for probate unless the estate you are representing is very large or plagued with disputes. With A People’s Choice, you can get your probate documents professionally prepared for a reasonable flat fee. Call us today at 800-747-2780
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