COVID-19 Update: We are open and serving our clients. Learn More >>>
Stephen Bilkis
Protecting your interests
and your loved one’s wishes
833.725.2972 Request A Free Consultation

Small Estates

A Philadelphia small estates lawyer can help to explain to you the small estate laws that exist in the state of Pennsylvania and whether or not these are applicable to a case that is getting ready for probate administration. Small estate laws are generally enacted in order to allow heirs to get property of a deceased person with shortened probate proceedings or without probate entirely.

However, small estate laws are only applicable when certain conditions are met. A Philadelphia small estates lawyer will advise about whether or not your individual case meets these requirements. Sometimes a deceased may prefer to structure their estate so that it is triggered by the small estates law, but in other cases, a person might not have done any estate planning at all and as a potential beneficiary, you need the support of an attorney to help you. Small estates can be administered with less cost and time than a traditional estate.

Even a small estate could become subject to a dispute at some point, meaning that the interested parties would have to hire a will dispute lawyer.

A small estates lawyer in Philadelphia will be able to answer many of your questions about this and to ensure that all of the appropriate details have been addressed. If the deceased, for example, conveyed most of their property to a trust, but there is still some property outside of the trust, small estate laws could still be triggered. But you need to discuss your individual circumstances directly with a Philadelphia small estates attorney. Small estate procedures can typically be used regardless of whether or not there was a will. There are two primary types of small estate procedures that are recognized in the state of Pennsylvania. The first is known as summary administration. Only certain states will allow for a summary administration. Some states will recognize this summary administration and the second option is small estate affidavit.

Under Pennsylvania's statutes, when an estate is valued at less than $25,000 an interested party can directly petition the court and the court can decide whether or not distribution of property can begin immediately. The second method for small estate procedures is known as the small estate affidavit. Certain states will allow an affidavit to be executed by the heirs of the deceased or the spouse of the deceased and present that affidavit to the holder of property like a bank in order to obtain the property of the deceased.

The estate cannot exceed a certain value in order to trigger these individual circumstances. Regardless of your decision to move forward with this type of estate, it is important to realize that there are still specifics within the law and certain conditions must be met in order to protect the small estate rules. For this reason, you need to consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible to verify whether or not the estate in question does indeed fall under the parameters for the small estate law.

You don’t want your loved ones having to deal with your lack of planning in court in the form of a dispute.

If you make a mistake in your case, it can add a significant amount of time and this is often a primary concern for people who are hoping to avoid probate to begin with and allow a loved one's estate to move through the process much more quickly. While grieving, there are many different things to think about and the support of an experienced estate administration lawyer can help you to avoid many challenges.

Client Reviews
★★★★★
"Had the great fortune to know David Dessen and Bonnie Moses for decades. I respect both their legal opinions as well as their good work. I highly recommend them. Not only for my legal issues but I refer them when I’m asked for an attorney in the Philadelphia area." SS
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
Contact Us