What happens if probate of a Will is not applied for within the 4-year requirement?

Asked on November 11, 2011 under Estate Planning, Texas


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  Texas is one of those states that indeed has a statute of Limitation son admitting a Last Will and Testament for probate  And you are indeed correct that it is 4 years from the date of the death of the decedent.  If you don not probate the Will or at last try and start the proceeding by seeking to submit the Will into probate within those four years, then the law treats the matter as if the decedent died "intestate" or with out any Will at all.  Then the intestacy statutes in the state of Texas will govern the distribution of the assets of the decedent.  So any benefit the Will may have created for a person that would not inherit - or inherit a different amount - is lost.   Good luck.

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