Estate Law Questions? Ask an Estate Lawyer.
My sympathies for your loss. What state is this in please?
For people that die with a will, any property addressed in the will requires probate. Probate is a legal proceeding whereby a personal representative (pr)/executive is appointed (typically this person is named in the will). The PR has the responsibility of collecting assets and distributing them according to the terms of the will. For real property, this requires the PR executing a transfer deed, transferring the property from the decedent to the named heir. It is then filed with the local recorder's office, so that it becomes part of the chain of title, establishing new ownership. This pamphlet explains the probate process in detail: http://www.courts.state.va.us/courts/circuit/resources/probate_in_virginia.pdf
One moment please
More information here: http://www.valegalaid.org/files/E095B726-FCD8-81C1-17DC-A16C7ED73FFF/attachments/4912AA38-6146-4498-B0CA-A513D03C7185/decendent-estates.pdf
The PR may only sell real estate if the will explicitly states this, with the proceeds going to the heir. Otherwise, the PR executes a deed to transfer the actual real estate to the heir.
The PR typically does not distribute any property until all estate debts are paid and an inventory is filed with the court: http://www.courts.state.va.us/forms/circuit/cc1670inst.pdf. After debts are paid, property can be distributed; a final accounting showing distributions needs to be filed with the court.
So distribution occurs during probate, not after.
You are most welcome. Thank you and take care.
ere is a link to locate an attorney: http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/findlegalhelp/home.cfm
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