Many clients come to us with questions regarding which assets of a deceased loved one are required to go through the probate process in California. Probate is the court process that allows you to transfer property owned by the decedent that was not transferred while they were living or as a matter of law. Examples of assets that may be required to go through probate are:

  • Real property (such as the person’s home)
  • Bank accounts
  • Vehicles
  • Investment accounts
  • Retirement accounts

The first place to look in determining whether the asset must pass through probate is the title. If the deed or account name is solely in the name of the deceased, then the property is required to be probated. If title to the property is held jointly with another individual, then pursuant to law, the joint owner becomes the sole owner. In other words, property that is held jointly does not have to go through the probate process. It is also possible for certain assets to have a designated beneficiary. For example, many brokerage accounts allow you to name a beneficiary so the account transfers without the requirement of probate. If you have questions about the California probate process, you don’t have to go through this alone. We will do most of the “heavy lifting” and maintain an open line of communication throughout the entire process. Call today if you have any questions: (714) 963-7543. At The Legacy Lawyers we are dedicated to your peace of mind.