Do wills have to go through probate?

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Do wills have to go through probate?

Mother-in-law died in MI; we live in CA. Landlord won’t let us in to get her personal belongings and clean without court appointed personal representative. Landlord changed locks even though we had her apartment key.

Asked on August 18, 2010 under Estate Planning, Michigan

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not probate is required depends on the size of the estate.  The size of the estate in which probate is required varies from state to state.  If your mother-in-law had a small estate, probate is unnecessary.

The landlord does not have the right to withhold your mother-in-law's personal belongings.  You could sue the landlord for conversion which is the assumption of dominion and control over the personal property of your mother-in-law.


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