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If you were listed as primary/sole beneficiary on the life insurance, IRA, and 401k, then those are non-probate assets that should go to you without going through the probate court. Other property like a home, automobiles, or bank accounts that did not have your name on them could potentially be probate assets where you'd need to open a probate case to transfer them...
Credit cards in his name alone would be debts of his estate. If your name is ***** ***** those accounts, generally you would not be liable for them, but his estate is.
So in order to deal with the cc debts (and any other outstanding debts, expenses, or taxes of the estate, e.g., medical bills, funeral, auto loans, etc.), a probate case would need to be opened. Any assets of the estate would first need to go toward the outstanding debts before any heirs got their share of an inheritance.
As long as the life insurance and investment accounts named you as sole beneficiary, they would not be part of the probate estate.
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