How Informal Probate Works in California
The most important things that happen during probate are that creditors get an opportunity to claim debts from the estate, the estate files a tax return, and the heirs listed in the will get their inheritance. (If the deceased person did not have a will, then his or her closest family members inherit the money that remains at the end of probate.) Probate is time-consuming; it usually takes almost a year, and it involves lots of paperwork and several court hearings. It is only fair to have a formal process like probate to give people a chance to resolve disputes about the will or about debts owed by the deceased person. In California, however, not all estates must proceed through a full probate. There are several informal probate options to settle smaller estates.
It is more practical and efficient for the court to only go through the formalities of probate if the deceased person owned valuable assets. Therefore, as mentioned above California law offers simplified informal probate alternatives for smaller estates. If the estate is worth more than $166,250, then it is automatically too big for informal probate. If it is below that threshold and the deceased person did not own real estate, you can file an informal probate and the heirs listed in the will can get the inherited property transferred to their names simply by submitting one or more affidavits (written statements) to the court. If the value of a real estate property belonging to the estate is less than $55,425, another informal probate process allows you to file an Affidavit re: Real Property of Small Value to have the title of the house transferred to you. If the real estate is valued at more than $55,425 but less than $166,250, there is an informal probate process that allows he filing of a Petition to Determine Succession to Real Property in order to have its title transferred to you without probate. All of these informal probate processes take work and involve a waiting period, but they are faster and less expensive than probate.
Practical Alternatives to Probate for Practical People
It pays to have a professional legal document assistant prepare your court documents for informal probate alternatives. Contact A People’s Choice at 800-747-2780 to get your inherited property as quickly and with as little hassle as possible.
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