Ask a Lawyer and Get Answers to Your Legal Questions
Good afternoon. I am Loren, a licensed attorney for over 30 yrs, and I look forward to assisting you.
No one is legally required to open an estate in probate, no matter their relationship to the decedent.
Probate is only necessary, generally, if the decedent left assets in their name which need to change title to someone else.
If all the assets are owned in joint tenancy with right of survivorship then title automatically passes to the surviving joint tenant outside of probate and it is not necessary to open an estate.
Did you have further questions? Have I answered your question?
It is not in writing that you do not have to probate an estate. It is only in writing when you do have to probate and that is the Probate Code.
Joint tenancy owned property is not a probate asset and only probate assets go through probate. That is the main reason people title assets in joint tenancy
By definition, property in joint tenancy automatically passes to the surviving joint tenant upon the death of the other. It is not an asset of the probate estate and it is not controlled by the last will.
Likewise, accounts with a named beneficiary got to the beneficiary. However, if the IRA says it goes to the estate, then it would need to go through probate to pass to the designated beneficiaries in the last will.
Property in trust does not, as a general rule, go through probate unless the trust agreement states otherwise.
If you have no further questions, and have not yet done so, please remember to leave a favorable rating (Excellent or Good) so that I am credited by JustAnswer for assisting you. A bonus is not required, but is always appreciated.
Did you have further questions before you rate my service to you?