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What are the Rules for Probate in Florida?

When a loved one dies, you may be tasked with handling their estate. Unless their assets are in a trust, you will have to go through the probate process. An estate is required to go through the probate process if there was no will and all the assets were only in the name of the decedent.

Probate is a court-supervised process for identifying the assets of a deceased person. The executor distributes the decedent’s assets after paying for funeral expenses and any outstanding debts.

The probate process in Florida involves many rules, which are laid out here. If you have a copy of the will and are named the executor, you have 10 days to notify the court of the decedent’s death. If a family member dies without a will, an heir must go to court and obtain “Letters of Administration” to allow a relative to serve as the personal representative. This person has the authority to settle all matters regarding the decedent’s estate.

Probate serves several purposes. It transfers ownership of the decedent’s probate assets to their beneficiaries. If the decedent had no will, probate would be necessary to pass ownership of their assets to those receiving them under Florida law. Also, probate might be necessary to wind up the decedent’s financial affairs and ensure creditors are paid.

There are three types of probate in Florida:

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Probate is required if a person dies with assets. Probate can be avoided if assets are held in a trust, but this is not common.

There are a lot of legal issues involved when a person dies. It may be difficult to handle these issues when you’re already dealing with grief from your loved one’s death.

Brian K. McMahon, P.A. is a West Palm Beach probate attorney who can guide you through the process and ensure your legal rights are protected. Schedule a consultation today by calling (561) 658-1789 or filling out the online form. We serve the West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Port St. Lucie, and South Florida areas.