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Texas Probate Court

Probate is the process by which a Will is proved valid or invalid by the court. When a person dies, his or her estate must go through probate.

If the decedent leaves a Will directing how property should be distributed after death, the probate court must determine if it should be admitted to probate and given legal effect.

If the decedent dies without leaving a will, the court appoints a personal representative to distribute the decedent’s property.

Individuals must begin the probate process in a Texas Probate Court within four years of death, since a statute of limitations on probate exists. If individuals do not petition their county’s Texas Probate Court to open an estate by then, all the money given to them in a Will is completely lost.

Knowing more about Texas Probate Courts and the services they can perform will make this procedure much more beneficial for the heirs.

Filing a Will in a Texas Probate Court is simpler if a Will was made by the deceased person prior to their death. In such a Will, an executor would have been named, and that executor will be tasked with performing the orders of the Will, according to the guidelines of the Texas Probate Court. First, the Texas Probate Court will serve the executor with Letters of Administration, making him or her official executor. The next step is for the executor to file the decree admitting the Will to probate.

If there is no Will to name an executor, the court will work with the deceased’s decedents to select a dependent probate administrator. This administrator will have all the duties given to an executor, but none of the independence. He or she will not be able to file any official forms or perform any action with the deceased’s estate without first getting permission from the Texas Probate Court. A bond will also need to be posted to the Texas Probate Court.

If all heirs of the deceased agree, a dependent probate administrator may be waived and replaced with an independent probate administrator. The process of selection will be exactly the same, but the actual administrator will be allowed to work quicker by making more decisions without the approval of the Texas Probate Court.

At the same time, the Texas Probate Court is determining who the legally viable heirs are. The ramifications of this process are manifold; not only do heirs have the ability to decide whether or not to appoint an independent probate administrator, they are more importantly the only people who will benefit from the execution of the estate. Since this is done according to Texas Probate Court procedure and not a debate regarding affection or worthiness; genetics count towards heirship in cases without Wills at the expense of all other factors.

Probate of Small Estates

Small estates are generally considered to be those worth less than $50,000 with no real estate property. Texas Probate Courts treat small estates differently, easing procedures for them and getting money to heirs much faster. A Small Estates Affidavit may be filed at the county’s Texas Probate Court for a small probate estate.

For assistance, contact at Looney, Smith & Conrad, P.C. at 281-597-8818 or 979-826-8484 or Text us: 405-388-6191.
Our attorneys are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

We can assist with the Uniform Probate Code, Probate Real Estate, a Probate Will, and avoiding probate.


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11767 Katy Freeway, Suite 740 Houston, Texas 77079

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918 Austin Street Hempstead, Texas 77445

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