If you do not have a Will, does real estate go into probate?

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If you do not have a Will, does real estate go into probate?

What does that mean?

Asked on February 28, 2015 under Estate Planning, Oklahoma

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not there is a Will, an estate  (i.e. the assets of a deceased person) must go through probate. This means that someone will be appointed by the local probate court (usually a family member or friend) to "administer" the estate. Accordingly, all assets will be accounted for, all creditors will be paid and all remaing assets, if any, will be distributed the heirs. If an estate is small enough, then most states have a small estate procedure which is a simplified kind of probate.

Note: If the real estate in question was held by the deceased and another person, then that person will have rights to their share and possibly all of the real estate, depending on just how title is held.

At this point you may want to consult with an attorney or at least the appropriate probate court (i.e. the one in the county in which the deceased was domiciled as of the date of their death; if the property is located in another state the court will direct as to how to proceed).


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