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  1. #1
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    Default Florida Probate And Summary Administration

    My mother died in Florida 2 years ago. We are now filing for summary administration. Her only asset is her home, worth about $150K. We had originally filed soon after her death, but the summary administration was rejected because her asset was over the $75K threshold (it's a long story, but there was bad legal advice at the time). My mother's will left everything equally to her 6 children. Tragically, my sister died in a motorcycle accident last month in California. Is there any way that we can pass my sister's one-sixth interest in my mother's house directly to her 3 surviving children without it having to pass through my sister's estate? My sister's estate may be close to $2 mil.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Florida Probate Question

    Quote Quoting momjd
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    My mother died in Florida 2 years ago. We are now filing for summary administration. Her only asset is her home, worth about $150K. We had originally filed soon after her death, but the summary administration was rejected because her asset was over the $75K threshold (it's a long story, but there was bad legal advice at the time). My mother's will left everything equally to her 6 children. Tragically, my sister died in a motorcycle accident last month in California. Is there any way that we can pass my sister's one-sixth interest in my mother's house directly to her 3 surviving children without it having to pass through my sister's estate? My sister's estate may be close to $2 mil.
    When did you begin initial probate proceedings? What did mom's will say/not say about about probate administration?

    735.201 Summary administration; nature of proceedings.--Summary administration may be had in the administration of either a resident or nonresident decedent's estate, when it appears:

    (1) In a testate estate, that the decedent's will does not direct administration as required by chapter 733.

    (2) That the value of the entire estate subject to administration in this state, less the value of property exempt from the claims of creditors, does not exceed $75,000 or that the decedent has been dead for more than 2 years.

    I know of no way to by-pass probate in regards to your deceased sister's estate. There will be estate taxes etc. for sister's estate from her share of mom's estate.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Florida Probate Question

    I'm not concerned with the probate of my mother's will. What I'm concerned with is finding a way to pass my sister's interest in my mother's house directly to her children without that interest having to go through my sister's estate. If my mother's will left a share to my sister "Per Stirpes" can that be interpreted that if my sister DID NOT SURVIVE PROBATE of my mother's will, then her share passes directly to her children? Or, does it mean that the interest would pass to the children only if my sister DID NOT SURVIVE MY MOTHER (which she did by 2 years)? My mother's will simply states that all her assets will be divided equally between her 6 children per stirpes.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Florida Probate Question

    Quote Quoting momjd
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    I'm not concerned with the probate of my mother's will. What I'm concerned with is finding a way to pass my sister's interest in my mother's house directly to her children without that interest having to go through my sister's estate. If my mother's will left a share to my sister "Per Stirpes" can that be interpreted that if my sister DID NOT SURVIVE PROBATE of my mother's will, then her share passes directly to her children? Or, does it mean that the interest would pass to the children only if my sister DID NOT SURVIVE MY MOTHER (which she did by 2 years)? My mother's will simply states that all her assets will be divided equally between her 6 children per stirpes.
    Your sister would have had to passed away prior to your mother passing for your sister's interest to directly go to her children.

    Per another thread, I understand the attorney part of your mom's probate. I don't see how your mom's estate can be probated using Summary Administration when her estate is over the Summary Administration limit.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Florida Probate And Summary Administration

    If we show that my mother's home was "homesteaded," then it falls under the threshold amount and it can be probated through summary administration. This can include whether my mother's home was homesteaded for tax purposes (which it wasn't), or if the decedent just intended the home to be "homesteaded" (which I'm hoping we can show through a copy of my mother's drivers' license showing the home as her principal address). Also, summary administration is available, regardless of the amount of the estate, if the decedent has been gone for more than 2 years. My mother passed away 2 years ago February.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Florida Probate And Summary Administration

    Quote Quoting momjd
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    If we show that my mother's home was "homesteaded," then it falls under the threshold amount and it can be probated through summary administration. This can include whether my mother's home was homesteaded for tax purposes (which it wasn't), or if the decedent just intended the home to be "homesteaded" (which I'm hoping we can show through a copy of my mother's drivers' license showing the home as her principal address). Also, summary administration is available, regardless of the amount of the estate, if the decedent has been gone for more than 2 years. My mother passed away 2 years ago February.
    $150K (value of home) minus 25K (amount homestead exemption) = $125K which is more than the limit. That's my understanding of how this works. I do know that depending on circumstances, the homestead is lost upon death of the owner.

    Also, you stated that you originally filed for probate immediately after your mom passed and that Summary Administration was rejected at that time. Therefore, I'm not certain what the court would do about all this. What I am certain of is that the court auditors will catch irregularities. All homesteaded property in FL include tax reductions (including additional tax reductions for widows/widowers), so how can homesteaded property not be for tax purposes?

    Regardless, good luck. You'll hear from the court auditors if/when they have any questions. The only time I heard from a court auditor was when an amended guardianship to include HCS did not change the annual reporting date to coincide with the new court order. An auditor didn't make the adjustment.

    p.s. Check your private messages.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Florida Probate And Summary Administration

    What I understand is that there are three distinct meanings of "homestead." One deals with the tax exemption, one is protection from creditors, and the other has to do with descent of the property if it is owned by a single owner and is survived by a wife and/or minor children. What I am looking at is the second aspect, protection from creditors. I believe (and was told by more than one Florida probate attorney) is that this is separate from the tax exemption filing that is filed with local tax assessor's office. Look at 735.201, subsection "2" which states summary administration is permitted when ". . . the value of the entire estate subject to administration in this state, less the value of property exempt from the claims of creditors, does not exceed $75,000 or that the decedent has been dead for more than 2 years." Here, the only asset in the estate is the house, approximate value $150K, but if it is exempt from the claims of creditors, then is qualifies for summary administration. This homestead stuff is horrible. Here is a link to a publication I found on the web that really explains it all well.

    http://www.estatetaxlawyers.com/arti...t%20Nelson.pdf

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Florida Probate And Summary Administration

    Quote Quoting momjd
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    What I understand is that there are three distinct meanings of "homestead." One deals with the tax exemption, one is protection from creditors, and the other has to do with descent of the property if it is owned by a single owner and is survived by a wife and/or minor children. What I am looking at is the second aspect, protection from creditors. I believe (and was told by more than one Florida probate attorney) is that this is separate from the tax exemption filing that is filed with local tax assessor's office. Look at 735.201, subsection "2" which states summary administration is permitted when ". . . the value of the entire estate subject to administration in this state, less the value of property exempt from the claims of creditors, does not exceed $75,000 or that the decedent has been dead for more than 2 years." Here, the only asset in the estate is the house, approximate value $150K, but if it is exempt from the claims of creditors, then is qualifies for summary administration. This homestead stuff is horrible. Here is a link to a publication I found on the web that really explains it all well.

    http://www.estatetaxlawyers.com/arti...t%20Nelson.pdf
    Please hire an attorney. You know not what you are doing. Please do purchase an extremely large amount of legal malpractice insurance.

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