The Law Office of Michael T. Heider, P.A. A Wills, Trusts, Estate And Elder Issues Practice

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How do I file for Probate in Florida from other state or country?

Estate Planning & Administration, Probate

Demand for property in the beautiful city of Florida is increasing exponentially every day. People from all over the world love Florida, and rightly so. But, in most of the cases, not the entire family will move to Florida. And, it’s understandable. It’s not easy to start from scratch in terms of moving to a new city. But when their loved one residing in Florida passes away, they often scratch their head on what about the property and residence in Florida.

They are emotionally broken due to the passing of their loved ones, and at the same time, don’t have even the slightest idea regarding the next steps they need to take regarding the estate & other property in Florida. To let you know, if you are in this situation, you need to do a Probate in Florida to acquire the rights on the assets of your loved one. But, how? What’s the process? Answers to all such questions lie in this article. Just read further to get your answers.

Figuring out if the proceedings will be in Florida

Firstly, you need to figure out if the proceeding will be in Florida itself? If your loved one was a resident of Florida, the proceedings should occur in the state of Florida itself.

There are certain points you keep in your mind and Stat 733.101 deals with the same. Some key points & their explanation regarding the venue of the proceedings this stat comprises are as follows.

733.101: Venue of Probate Proceedings:

  1. The venue for the probate proceedings shall be:A. In the county and in the state where the decedent was domiciled. Thus, it clearly mentions, the venue must be the same where your loved one was domiciled.
    B. In case, the decedent has no domicile in the state, then the venue of the proceedings will be any county where the decedent’s property is located.
    C. In case, the decedent has no domicile in the state and doesn’t acquire any property in the state, then the venue of the proceeding will be in the county where any debtor of decedent resides.
  2. If a married woman whose husband is alien, or not a resident of Florida is allowed to establish or designate a separate domicile in the state.
  3. Whenever a proceeding is filed in the improper county, the court has the right to transfer the action in the same way as provided in the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. It is necessary to note that any action by court our party before the transfer is not at all affected by the venue.

Thus, the venue of the proceedings must be a county in Florida if the decedent was domiciled in Florida. And, if you are a non-resident of Florida and looking to be an executor, then you need to keep section 733.304 in your mind.

Section 733.304 states, a person can qualify as the personal representative if:

  1. A person is legally adopted child or adoptive parent of the decedent.
  2. Have blood relation with the decedent by any means (children, grandchildren, etc.).
  3. Is a spouse or a brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece of the decedent or have blood relation with any such person.
  4. Is the spouse of the decedent.

Understanding Ancillary Probate

In simple words, ancillary probate means probate in a second state. Firstly, the probate begins in the state of residence of the deceased person. It is known as domiciliary probate. Then, the probate moves to the second state where the out-of-state estate is located. It is known as ancillary probate.

Usually, the ancillary probate doesn’t include a lot of complications. If the will is accepted in the first state or say domiciliary probate is cleared, the chances of ancillary probate giving any complications are meagre.

The procedure for both, the regular domiciliary estate and the ancillary probate is the same in Florida. However, after the ancillary probate, the assets can be transferred to the beneficiaries or else to the domiciliary estate.

Many people wish to avoid the Ancillary Probate, and rightly so. However, the Ancillary Probate is required in Florida only under the below conditions:

  1. If the person was not a Florida resident during his death.
  2. If the person acquired Florida property at the time of his death.

To start ancillary probate, some basic requirements a Florida attorney need to keep in mind are as follows:

  1. Two copies of the death certificate
  2. Copies of domiciliary proceedings

As mentioned above, the executor must have a blood relation with the deceased. The ancillary probate is classified into two categories, summary administration and formal probe administration. Insights into these categories are as follows.

  1. Summary Administration: This classification of the ancillary probate process is simplest and can be obtained when: assets are less than $75,000, the heirs’ consent to the procedure, decedent doesn’t have any debt, and there no hidden assets of descendent. The summary administration process hardly involves any complications and is quick.
  2. Formal Probate Administration: Now, this is a bit complex process and demands a considerable amount of time from the executor. When assets are more than $75,000, and when the heirs don’t give consent, or if the decedent has any debt, the formal probate administration is to be followed.

Step-by-Step Guide to Do a Probate in Florida from another state

Have a look at the step-by-step guide you need to follow to do probate in Florida from another state.

  1. Firstly, ensure the details you give to publish in the death certificate are correct. If required, check the details you submit more than once. Remember, you will require the death certificate at every stage of the probate process. Any mistake in the death certificate and making amendments in the certificate will be a tough nut to crack. Thus, the very first step is to ensure, you submit the accurate details.Also, ensure you arrange all your documents in one place. It will make things easy for you. This is because you will require your documents every now and then while doing a Probate.
  2. Next, you need to check the bank accounts of the deceased person. Check all the transactions the deceased person made in last few months in Florida. Chances are high you already know it, but checking it once is always recommended.Then, notify the banks in which the deceased had an account about him passing away. It will ensure a transparent process ahead. Also, anything like identity fraud and illegal pending debt payment won’t arise in the future.
  3. Next comes identifying and securing all the assets of a deceased person in Florida. If you are staying apart for a long time, chances are high, you aren’t aware of every asset the deceased person acquires. Also, it is your part to secure all the assets to avoid any sort of illegal acquisition on the same. Give a considerable amount of time in identifying all the assets of the deceased person.
  4. Next comes verifying the debts of a deceased person. Usually, the debts of the deceased person aren’t passed to the family members. But, it is on you, if you want to pay the debts. But, if you are a joint owner of the account, or if you are related to the debt by any means, it will be your responsibility to clear the same.
  5. After you are done with everything, now hire a reliable Florida Probate Attorney to complete the Probate process. You will require the assistance of the Florida Probate Attorney as the process is complex and it will be difficult for you to handle the same from another state.After you hire a reliable Florida Probate Attorney, they will be responsible for handling your Probate from scratch to the end.

We understand, losing your loved ones is tough. And, following the tough process of Probate in Florida is more difficult when you are emotionally low and not residing in Florida. But, hiring the Law Office of Michael Heider can make things easy for you to a great extent. Once you trust us, we ensure your probate process is quick and successful. Call 727-235-6005 or email the Law Office of Michael Heider to consult with a Professional Florida Probate Attorney. Let’s connect and acquire what’s yours!