It goes without saying that the death of a loved one leaves you stressed and grief-ridden. The matter is complicated when you add the legal side of things; words like “Probate” and “Small Estate Affidavit” don’t mean much to your average person, and are hard to grasp in the moment. Here are the essential facts to help you get started.
What Are Small Estate Affidavits and Probates?
When someone dies with property still in their name, a Probate usually needs to be filed—whether or not a will was drawn up. Details like the will’s validity are proven during a Probate. If an estate is small, however, a loved one or executor of the will can file a Small Estate Affidavit instead of a Probate. This helps streamline the process so that it doesn’t take as long.
When Should You File?
You may not be done with the grieving process when you file for a Small Estate Affidavit, but you should file as soon after your loved one’s death as you are emotionally and legally able. The earliest you are permitted to file is 30 days after their death.
What Makes It a Small Estate Affidavit?
A Small Estate Affidavit Beaverton OR applies to a maximum total estate value of $275,000. Of this, real property like land and buildings should be worth no more than $200,000; personal property such as clothing, vehicles and stocks should be worth a maximum of $75,000.
How Long Does It Take?
The Small Estate Affidavit will not close until four months after it is filed. During this time, creditors have several rights which they can exercise, including the right to file claims or a file a Probate. If someone does choose to act on those rights, the Small Estate Affidavit will take longer; if no one steps forward, it will conclude at the four-month mark.
Slogging through so many legal terms and examining the value of your loved one’s estate can be incredibly hard, especially so soon after their death. A Small Estate Affidavit, however, can help make the process faster and easier.