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Which of the estate assets are subject to probate?

On Behalf of | May 13, 2022 | Probate |

Anything a deceased person owns and has no way to pass on are probate assets. Probate assets don’t have any living beneficiary without the court-supervised probate process. The law transfers life insurance, bank accounts, some retirement accounts and some forms of real estate to beneficiaries. Any other forms of assets are subject to probate court proceedings in Taylor, Texas. The probate court makes decisions on four common assets.

Individual assets

All property under the decedent’s sole name is individual assets. Individual probate assets include investment accounts, bank accounts, vehicles, stocks, bonds and real estate. Individual assets include low-valued personal property such as electronics, memorabilia and electronics.

Tenants-in-common property

Tenant-in-common assets include property where the decedent’s name is individual or with a group. Every owner of a tenant-in-common has a percentage of interest in the property. Real estate for unmarried owners often use this method, but bank accounts, investment accounts and stocks may use this method. Any tenant-in-common assets with survivorship pass to the next living beneficiary without probate estate.

Predeceased beneficiaries and assets outside of a trust

Assets with beneficiaries or payable-on-death designations may become part of the deceased’s probate estate. The beneficiaries of life insurance or retirement accounts can die before the owner. Never naming a beneficiary is the same as all the beneficiaries of an asset dying. An owner that names the estate as the beneficiary will go through probate.

People often move property into a living trust, but some assets may become part of probate. A living trust helps an owner avoid the probate process as long as the assets are inside the trust. The owner may acquire additional assets over the years and neglect to add them to their trust. A pour-over will direct property outside the trust into the trust after death. The assets still contribute to the decedent’s probate estate.