Informal probate is used by the Probate Courts to appoint an individual without having to go through a formal hearing prior to the appointment of a Personal Representative. These appointments are generally for Estates that are simple in nature, where the parties are in agreement as to the division of assets or there is an immediate need to protect an Estate asset.
The one key advantage to an Informal Probate is after the filing of the opening documents the Probate Court registrar appoints the Personal Representative within several days rather than several weeks for as with a Formal Probate procedure. This allows the Personal Representative begin administering the Estate in a shorter amount of time.
Once the Estate claims have been paid, the assets have been liquidated and distributed and six months have passed form the date of the appointment the Estate can be closed by filing an Informal Closing Statement with the Probate Court and the Personal Representative is then discharged by the Probate Court one year after the filing of the Closing Statement.
As always, we highly recommend anyone contact one of our Probate and Trust lawyers at Evans Case to set up a free 30-minute consultation so you can make sure that you get answers to your Probate and Trust questions and then you can make informed decisions on your probate or elder law questions.