Florida probate is a legal process by which a deceased person’s assets are distributed among their beneficiaries or heirs. If there are any debts, they are settled. Probate is a court-supervised procedure designed to ensure the orderly transfer of assets, payment of debts and resolution of any claims against the estate. The Florida Probate Code outlines the rules and timing governing this process. The complexity of the process can vary depending on the size of the estate, the presence or absence of a valid will, whether there are disputes among the heirs or beneficiaries, and the complexity of the issues presented. The probate process is designed to provide transparency and accountability and to safeguard the rights of both the decedents creditors and beneficiaries.
One of the key distinctions in Florida probate is between formal and summary administration. Formal administration is required when the estate’s value exceeds $75,000 or when there are complex issues to resolve such as proving the validity of a will or the sale of real estate. In formal administration a personal representative is appointed by the court to manage the estate’s affairs. On the other hand, summary administration is a streamlined process suitable for smaller estates where the value of assets subject to probate is less than $75,000 or if the decedent has been deceased for more than two years. summary administration allows for a faster distribution of assets without the appointment of a personal representative.
Florida probate also involves several stages including the filing of a will if applicable appointment of a personal representative inventory of assets the 90-day creditor period which includes the payment of valid debts, taxes, and distribution of remaining assets to the beneficiaries or heirs. Navigating the probate process in Florida can be intricate and requires an attorney. Seeking legal guidance following the death of a loved one is often advisable to ensure compliance with state laws and to expedite the distribution of assets to rightful beneficiaries. We can help your family navigate this process. Please give us a call.