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Richard
Richard, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 55594
Experience:  29 years of experience practicing law, including tax and estate planning.
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Yes a question: is probate required when anyone dies?

Customer Question

Yes a question: is probate required when anyone dies?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Richard replied 2 years ago.
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Not necessarily. Probate is only necessary in California if there are probate assets in excess of $150,000. Certain assets pass outside probate and thus are not governed by the will and thus do not require probate. These include the following: i) joint brokerage and bank accounts which vest automatically in the surviving owner upon the death of one owner; ii) real property held as joint tenants or tenants by the entirety, which also vest automatically in the surviving owner upon the death of one owner; and iii) assets with designated beneficiaries other than the estate such as life insurance and retirement accounts. Also, assets in a revocable living trust are not subject to probate. If the total probate assets are $150,000 or less, probate can be avoided by using a Small Estate Affidavit.
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