Small Estate Procedures
Under California law, there are a number of methods and court proceedings that can be used to collect small estates without having to file a full probate proceeding, including the use of declarations to collect a small amount of personal property, the use of an affidavit to transfer real property worth less than $20,000, and filing a summary probate proceeding to transfer real property worth less than $100,000.
Whenever possible, these small estate procedures should be used instead of a full probate proceeding since they are less expensive than a full probate proceeding and take less time. However, there are times where it is better to use a full probate instead of a small estate proceeding and it is, therefore, wise to consult with an attorney to make sure that using a small estate proceeding is the best and least expensive method to obtain the title to the assets of a decedent.
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