Can I cash or deposit a check made out to my uncle’s estate if we did not probate the Will?

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Can I cash or deposit a check made out to my uncle’s estate if we did not probate the Will?

Banks and check cashers say we need court documents that don’t exist. Anything to do 6 years after his death with a $5,000 refund for an overpayment to auto finance company.

Asked on October 5, 2011 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am sorry for your loss.  So your uncle had a Will that you chose not to probate for what ever reason (maybe there was nothing in the estate?) and now the estate has a fund from which to draw, correct?  Was there any proceeding that you did for his estate at all?  Each state has a mechanism for probating small estates.  Some by summary administration and some by affidavit  I believe that Texas has a proceeding for estates under $50,000, which would be your option here.  You may have to attach a copy of the Will at this point in time.  Just look in to the issues of creditors, etc. Good luck to you.


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