The probate process in Oklahoma is governed by the probate laws. Each state throughout the country has its own rules for how probate works. The probate process in Oklahoma is kick started in the majority of deaths occurring in the state. Probate becomes necessary for facilitating the transfer of assets of a deceased and winding up their estate unless the deceased took necessary steps to ensure their property passes by a trust or other means outside the probate
What Assets are Probated in Oklahoma
All assets that are individually owned and not subject to a statute or contract governing transfer of asset ownership can go through probate. For instance, consider two bank account types. One is held individually in the name of the deceased while the other is held as a joint account. The bank account with the single name will not be transferred without an order of the probate court or other instruction made prior to debt by its owner. Now, the second bank account is held as a joint account. In this case, there will be a “rights of survivor”. The account will by default go to the surviving owner as the name implies. The process will take place without a court order. In this case, the assets do not need to go through the probate process.
Common Types of Probate Assets:
· Assets owned as tenants in common
· Single name investment and bank accounts
· Collectibles and art
· Personal property
· Automobile when held individually
· Real property held individually
· Safety deposit box
Does a Will Make Probate Unnecessary?
Probate is necessary even if the decedent has a valid will. It is up to the probate courts to decide if the will is valid and if so will pass by its terms. Its the probate process itself that determines the validity of a will. If the will is valid the process is distributed per its terms. In the case where the will isn’t valid or doesn’t exist property of the Estate will pass by intestate distribution. Intestate succession looks to the heirs of the person who has died. The heirs are called heirs at law. Who gets what depends on how close they are related to the decedent.
However, this doesn’t mean that probate is always necessary. There are several estates that are too small for the proceedings and can successfully bypass them. Estates need to have a total value less than $50,000 in this case. This is after all liabilities and debts are removed under the Oklahoma inheritance laws. You will be asked to fill a court affidavit to initiate the process.
A personal representative is usually named in the will for managing and executing the probate estate. Beneficiaries of the will are tasked with appointing a personal representative if the will doesn’t name anyone as the personal representative.
Tulsa Probate Law Firm Near You
The probate processes in Oklahoma depends on the size of the Estate and property that needs to be probated. The process also depends on whether there is a will or if the Estate is to pass by intestate distribution. In each event you’ll need to file the probate in the county where the Decedent lived or owns property, Our probate attorneys file cases in all Oklahoma Counties. Call today and get a free consultation with a Tulsa probate lawyer.