Do we need to probate a Will if my mom left her only asset, a home,to a sibling?

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Do we need to probate a Will if my mom left her only asset, a home,to a sibling?

What are the steps for transferring it into his name?

Asked on May 8, 2011 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If your mother didn't have an estate plan at all, the estate would have to be probated. If she had left a trust, the estate would probably fall outside of probate. The issue of having a will only can still require probate. While your mother left the home to your sibling or to her sibling, if the home was not owned as joint owners (joint tenancy), then the home doesn't automatically go to the sibling. The will needs to be reviewed to see if the home was to be inherited subject to the mortgage or assuming the mortgage. The party inheriting the home has the option of course of not accepting the gift or bequest. Further, the furnishings in the home, any bank accounts she may have had, paid but uncashed social security checks, other retirement monies and any vehicles would need to be probated if the items didn't include any beneficiary designations.


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