All important documents which are used in the probate process are known as probate records. The first category of records relate to personal properties which are to be submitted to the court. The will should state what assets are involved, who are the beneficiaries, who will be the personal representative, guardian for minor children less than 18 years old, someone to manage children's' property [if the heirs are minors or young adults], signature of witnesses, signature of self and endorsement by the notary.Courts and law firms give out prescribed forms for writing a will. Today, there are not only printed books, but also e-books, CDs and computer software, all available for developing a will. Software is a bit more expensive than book versions. [All these versions come within an approximate price range of US$25 to 50].The next important document is proof of assets, which are in decedent's sole name. These can include bank accounts, securities, Individual Retirement Accounts, life insurance policies/premiums, employee benefit plans, foreign property, Social Security benefits, IRS Tax Refunds and US Savings Bonds.The second category includes administrative papers which are necessary in any probate. These include "Petition for probate of will and Letters testamentary" or a "Petition for letters of administration", which is submitted along with the prescribed filing fee and the death certificate.The judge conducts probate proceedings, appoints a person to handle the probate issue and execute the will or administer the assets respectively. Then issues the order sought. Both the above mentioned letters are known as "letters". Some courts call this letter "Notice of appointment".When necessary, the judge holds hearings and clarifies queries raised by issuing written directions called "orders." For instance, there is an order to pay the decedent's debts and taxes and divide the rest among the beneficiaries.The next important record is Notice of administration. This is also known as "Notice to creditors". This is a notice given by the personal representative after identifying, gathering, appraising and safeguarding probate assets, for publication in a local newspaper. This is done so that every body, particularly creditors if any, will come to know of the current position of the properties. It enables the creditors to take responsive action by claiming the amount due to them by filing a `creditor's claim', to get back any money owed by the decedent. In Washington and some other states, `Notice to creditors' is optional.Then the Personal Representative disburses the property to all the heirs and beneficiaries, and obtains a document signed by them. This document, known as "Receipt and Waiver" signifies that the heirs and beneficiaries have received their respective share of the estate.Next, the Personal Representative submits all the Receipts and Waivers and a Declaration of Completion of Probate to the probate court.Finally the court issues an Order for transfer of property to heirs and beneficiaries. This is the epilogue of the probate episode.How To Avoid Probate provides detailed information on probate, how to avoid probate, probate court, probate law and more. How To Avoid Probate is affiliated with Free Last Will And Testament Packages. Related Articles - probate, how to avoid probate, probate court, probate law, Email this Article to a Friend! Receive Articles like this one direct to your email box!Subscribe for free today!
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