Texas Probate Procedures

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

Full Bio →

Written by

UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about legal topics and insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything legal and insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by experts.

The probate eligibility of Texas estates is determined in part based on whether a will exists that lays out the decedent’s wishes for his or her property and assets. Estates without a will that are worth less than $50,000 can qualify for a small estate affidavit through the Texas probate courts. The costs of the small estate affidavit depends on the number of heirs, the complexity of the matter, and whether the heirs are difficult to reach. Estates without wills that are worth more than $50,000 may qualify for an heirship proceeding, in which a judge tries to locate the heirs of the decedent, then appoints an attorney ad litem to represent the heirs who cannot be found.

Estates that do have a will may be eligible for independent administration, a procedure that simplifies Texas probate law. In this case, a carefully-worded will designates an independent executor who distributes the assets without court interference or intervention. In addition, Texas has a unique probate law concerning estates that consist solely or mostly of real property and have no debts; in such cases, the probate court order essentially acts as a new deed to the property in question.

Estate planning and common sense lead to simple probate proceedings. However, if your case is contested or complex, you may wish to seek out the advice of an experienced Texas probate attorney.

For more information, check out our article on the Basics of Texas Probate

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption