Probate Records

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					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.


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