Probate assets are assets that will have to be transferred to a beneficiary through the use of a probate court. With this type of asset, a probate court will have to decide how they are distributed. Any of these assets could avoid going through probate if they were placed into a trust of some type. Here are the basics of probate assets and what assets would be included in this class.

Real Estate

Real estate is an asset that will have to go through probate, unless it is was included in a trust. You may also sometimes be able to avoid probate if it was owned jointly with another individual on the title.

Bank Accounts

Any bank accounts that you have are also going to have to go through the probate process. This applies to checking accounts, savings accounts, CDs and any other type of account that you might have.

Real Property

Any real property that you have is also going to have to be transferred through the probate process. For example, if you own any automobiles, they are going to become probate assets. This will also apply to antiques, furniture, electronic equipment and any other valuables, like art or coin collections.

How are probate assets distributed in a probate proceeding?

When you die, any probate assets that you have will be distributed to your beneficiaries. During this process, the local probate court will look at your will in order to determine if you have made the proper arrangements. The court will generally honor the wishes in your will and will transfer ownership of the appropriate assets to your specified beneficiaries. If you do not have a will, then the court will have to make the decisions for you. In some cases, an individual will be appointed to sell the assets and then split the money among family members.

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