A probate bond is an insurance policy for associated parties of the decedent should the executor breach a fiduciary duty while administering the decedent’s estate during probate.
The bond’s size generally correlates with the estate’s size. For example, per Probate Code § 8482(a)(1)-(3), “the court in its discretion may fix the amount of the bond, but the amount of the bond shall be not more than the sum of:
- The estimated value of the personal property.
- The probable annual gross income of the estate.
- If independent administration is granted as to real property, the estimated value of the decedent’s interest in the real property.”
A bond is not required in the following situations:
- The will waives bond. Prob Code §8481(a)(1). It should be noted that the court may require bond even though the will waives the requirement of bond if:
- All beneficiaries in writing waive bond and the will did not require bond or there is no will. Probate Code §8481(a)(2).
- A trust company is appointed executor. Probate Code §§83, 301(a).