Learn Important Probate Essentials, including key things that go wrong in an estate, how to prevent them, and what to do if they happen.
What happens when the deceased was a resident of one state and owned real estate in another state? How do the probate courts handle this situation?
When this type of issue occurs, you will usually have to open probate in both states. The reason for this is that there is no probate court with jurisdiction over all aspects of the probate case. The probate court located in the state where the deceased resided has jurisdiction over all personal property (non-real estate), money, and real estate located within that state. This initial proceeding is often called primary probate. The only part of the estate that the primary probate court does not have jurisdiction over is real estate located outside the state where primary probate is opened.
As a result, a second probate must be opened to deal with out of state real property. The second probate will be opened in the state where the property is located. This proceeding is usually called ancillary probate. If there is real estate in a third state, then an ancillary probate will need to be opened there also.
In Georgia, opening ancillary probate is similar to opening a primary probate. The main difference is that the Georgia probate court will also want to have certified or exemplified copies of the probate court proceedings from the primary probate. As a result, you will want to open the primary probate before opening the ancillary probate.
For help with this and other probate situations, please have a consultation with our office.
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