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Should You Sign an Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter?

For so many people, the loss of a loved one or a family member is a moment characterized by complex emotions, and the idea of probate becomes a daunting thought. Did the deceased leave a will where he clearly mentions who the beneficiaries of his inheritance are and names an executor to fulfil his last wishes? Should I call a lawyer? Do I have specific deadlines that I must respect in the probate process? What is “Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter”? Do I need one? And what are the next steps?

In this post, we’ll help you understand what instanter means, when the Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter form is used, and what the situations are when you should and should not sign this document.

What Does Instanter Mean? Instanter Legal Definition. 

Instanter is a Latin term meaning “without delay, immediately, instantly, forthwith”.

The word is used in various legal contexts, such as, for example, when a court issues an order for a writ of possession instanter or when an attorney files a motion requesting an action to be taken immediately.

What Does the Acknowledgement of Service in Georgia Mean? 

An “Acknowledgment of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter” is a form to verify that all the heirs of the deceased must acknowledge that they have received a copy of the will and the petition to probate and they agree to allow the probate process to go forward.

It waives any future service regarding the petition to probate will in solemn form, and it is also used for heirs to consent to probate the will. Signing off on this document states that the heir agrees with the will and the executor appointed by the probate court.

What Is an Assent to Probate Instanter? 

The “Acknowledgement of Service & Assent to Probate Instanter Form” is commonly used to open an estate when the Deceased leaves a last will and testament.

Typically, the executor nominated by the testament sends this form to each estate heir and asks them to sign it. Having signatures from all beneficiaries will make it much simpler for the executor to open the estate.

Probating a Will in Solemn Form 

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The petition to probate will in solemn form is the most common and used when the deceased has a will.

Its sole purpose is to ask the probate court to determine whether the will filed by the petitioner is the last will and testament of the deceased.

The process of probating a will in solemn form includes a few phases. 

Exactly as the name of this probate petition implies, when filing the request form, the petitioner must present to the court the proposed last will and testament of the deceased. This is not a correct petition to file if the will cannot be found or the deceased did not have a will.

The petitioner is responsible for providing the probate court with certain information. Among that information must be the names and addresses of all heirs of the estate. This allows the probate court to send them legal notices.

Any heir may file an objection called a caveat, with the probate court to try to have the will declared invalid. This is commonly referred to as a will contest.

Once the heirs have had the opportunity to object, the petitioner must prove the will to the probate court. If the petitioner satisfies the probate court that the document presented is the last will and testament of the deceased, then the probate court will issue an order to that effect. They then allow the named executor to qualify. When the named executor qualifies, the probate court will issue letters of testamentary.

In our company, we are able to take the complex and simplify it, making sure that each client understands which options he has at each stage of the process. Every situation is unique, and our office is dedicated to ensuring that every circumstance is precise. That way, our clients can make intelligent and informed decisions.

What Happens When You Sign an Acknowledgement of Service & Assent to Probate Instanter? 

When you sign, you are stating that:

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  • you have seen and reviewed the will.
  • you have seen and reviewed the petition to probate will.
  • you agree with and approve both documents.
  • In addition, you are waiving your right to contest the will or the petition.

Whether you should sign an Acknowledgement of Service & Assent to Probate Instanter depends on the situation in your case.

If you feel entirely comfortable with the will and the person nominated as executor, then there is no harm in signing the form.

But if you believe you may want to challenge the testament or the nominated executor, we recommend you not to sign the Assent to Probate.

What Happens When You Don’t? What If a Heir Will Not Sign the Form for Probate? 

If an heir refuses to sign the acknowledgement of service and assent to probate instanter document, the named executor may choose to file the proper paperwork with the Probate Court to have the heir formally sent the documents.

When an heir is served, they may receive the paperwork by certified mail or Sheriff’s service. After notification, they typically have 30 days to file an objection if they wish to do so.

If an objection is not filed during the legal deadline, the probate court may accept the will and appoint the executor.

If an objection is filed, the court will set a hearing date for a later date to hear both sides and determine whether to accept the will or not.

Will objections are extremely difficult situations, and we recommend reaching out to our office if this is a situation you are facing.

Can an Executor Assent to Themselves? 

Yes, if the named executor is also an heir to the estate, he will be asked to sign the Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter document.

If there are other heirs to the estate, they will also be asked to sign off on the Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter document.

Acknowledgement of Service And Assent to Probate Instanter Sample

Here is an example of an Acknowledgement of Service And Assent to Probate Instanter Sample used by the Georgia Probate law:  


The Next Step

Although it is possible to prepare a probate application and administer an estate without the assistance of a probate attorney, it is advisable to seek specialized legal help.

That way, you can be sure that you have a probate process in which the executor performs all duties efficiently and completely – from notifying beneficiaries to paying the outstanding deceased’s debts and taxes and distributing the remaining estate assets according to the deceased’s wishes.

Are there any unanswered questions about Acknowledgement of Service and Assent to Probate Instanter? Call us at (770) 637-6701, or use the form and set up a free consultation to speak with one of our experienced probate attorneys.


Disclaimer: The information above is provided for general information only and should not be considered legal advice. Our probate attorneys provide legal advice to our clients after talking about the specific circumstances of the client’s situation. Our law firm cannot give you legal advice unless we understand your situation by talking with you. Please contact our law office to receive specific information about your situation.

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About the author

Erik J. Broel
Founder & ceo

Erik founded the firm in 2009. He sees it as his personal mission to demystify the process of handling an estate or trust, and to help people by making the complex estate process simple and accessible. He believes there is always a better way to do things, and loves finding new and innovative ways to deliver better, more effective service that solves the client’s key problem or issue, and improves the client’s life.

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