Florida has four basic types of probate proceedings:
- Formal administration
- Summary administration
- Disposition of personal property without administration
- Ancillary Administration
Formal Administration Florida Probate
A formal probate administration is the most common type of estate proceeding in Florida. This type of administration is required if the assets of the probate estate are over $75,000, excluding the Florida homestead property.
A formal probate administration involves admitting the will to probate (if the decedent had a valid will) and appointing a personal representative who will then administer the estate. A formal probate administration is also used for intestate estates that are over the $75,000 threshold.
See the Florida Probate Guide which contains information about the issues that can arise in a Florida formal probate administration.
Summary Administration Florida Probate
Summary administration in Florida probate is a type of expedited probate proceeding. A Florida summary administration can be used if the decedent has:
- Been dead for more than two years; OR
- The value of the entire probate estate does not exceed $75,000
To learn more, read Summary Administration in Florida Probate.
Disposition Of Personal Property Without Administration
The disposition of personal property without administration is a type of administration (that does not involve opening probate) available under Florida law when the decedent dies leaving only:
- personal property exempt under the provisions of section 732.402
- personal property exempt from the claims of creditors under the Florida Constitution, and
- nonexempt personal property the value of which does not exceed the sum of the amount of preferred funeral expenses and reasonable and necessary medical and hospital expenses of the last 60 days of the last illness.
Section 735.301, Florida Statutes. The clerk of court is authorized to assist an applicant with the forms necessary for a disposition of personal property without administration. Upon informal application for a disposition of personal property without administration, the court, by letter or other writing under the seal of the court, may authorize the payment, transfer, or disposition of the personal property, tangible or intangible, belonging to the decedent to those persons entitled.
An ancillary probate administration is required in Florida if a non-Florida resident dies leaving Florida property that does not pass by title or operation of law. This includes real and personal property, credits due from Florida residents, or liens on property in Florida.
Ancillary probate proceedings can be used in Florida whether the decedent dies with or without a will. See Chapter 734, Florida Statutes. To learn more, read Ancillary Probate Administration in Florida.
A Florida probate attorney can help you determine which one of the types of Florida probate administration is right for your particular situation.