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When is the ancillary probate needed?

On Behalf of | Feb 4, 2020 | Trust And Probate Administration

You may have heard of the term ancillary probate. According to LegalZoom, ancillary probate occurs when your loved one dies in one state and they own real estate in another state, for example, Florida. This only applies to real estate. It does not apply to personal property. 

So, if your loved one dies in Florida, but they had a bank account, brokerage account, mutual fund or whatever they may have in some other state, that will be counted as part of their personal property in Florida.  It does not matter if they opened up this account across the country; the point is, they were living in Florida and that property will be part of their probate estate in Florida. 

If your loved one owns real estate, let’s say in Texas, then in addition to the probate in Florida, there will be a need to do ancillary probate in Texas. Now, the flip side of this is also true. Let’s assume that your loved one was living in Texas, and they moved from Miami to Dallas. So, they moved to Dallas but kept their home in Miami. Their home in Miami has been rented to generate income when they ultimately died. That house in Miami is not going through probate in Texas. 

Real estate is treated differently, like every probate court in every state in the union. So if you have a loved one who died out of state and they had real estate in Florida, you will have to do ancillary probate in Florida in order to get clear title to that property and pass it to whoever was supposed to get it now that your loved one is dead.