Dealing with the passing of a loved one is never easy, and navigating the legal aspects of their estate can add an extra layer of complexity. The Florida Office of the State Courts Administrator reported Circuit probate filings for the 2022 fiscal year were more than 161,000.
The probate process helps to make it easier to finalize an estate through legal channels. However, there are options depending on the estate’s complexity. One option that can make the situation easier is Disposition of Personal Property Without Administration.
Explanation of the process
Disposition of Personal Property Without Administration is a streamlined process to simplify the handling of a deceased person’s estate when the value of their assets falls below a certain threshold. It allows bypassing the court supervision of probate. The law allows for the use of this option when the deceased assets do not exceed the total of the costs for funeral and medical expenses for the 60 days prior to the death.
To initiate this process, an interested party, often a surviving spouse or a close relative, may file an affidavit with the probate court. The affidavit must affirmatively state that the value of the decedent’s entire estate, excluding exempt property and the value of any protected homestead, does not exceed the limit specified by Florida law.
The affidavit should list all the decedent’s assets, such as bank accounts, personal belongings and other personal property, along with their corresponding values. It is important to be thorough and accurate in documenting these details to ensure a smooth and efficient process.
After approving the petition, the court will typically release the decedent’s personal property. It will go to whoever has inheritance rights under the law.
Not all estates are eligible for disposition without administration. If the decedent’s estate includes real property, exceeds the value limit or involves complex legal issues, alternative probate procedures may be necessary.