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Do I have to probate my husband's will?

Atlanta, GA |

My husband and I owned everything jointly, and the only thing I am concerned about is the home. We bought it back in 1990, and there is no language regarding joint tenancy or survivorship. I was told that without this language, I have to probate the will to have the house put in my name. I inherit everything under the will, but I'd like to avoid probate. Can I?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. My condolences to you on your loss. I am going to assume that you and your husband had your primary residence in Georgia. If your deed does not specifically state that you and your husband owned the house with rights of survivorship, as "joint tenants" or something very similar, then yes, you probably need to probate the Will to transfer the house to yourself. I very strongly recommend that you consult a lawyer to ensure that you know what to do and how to proceed.

    This answer is not intended to provide you with specific legal advice regarding your situation, or to create any attorney-client relationship. The intent is only to provide general information. You should be aware that you cannot rely on this answer to provide you with any protection against tax penalties. You should always consult your own attorney in order to obtain legal advice.


  2. I agree with Ms. DiSalvo and based on her answers to questions on AVVO she is very thorough and knowledgeable.

    This is not legal advice nor intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided here is informational in nature only. This attorney may not be licensed in the jurisdiction which you have a question about so the answer could be only general in nature. Visit Steve Zelinger's website: http://www.stevenzelinger.com/


  3. You definitely have to do a probate. You want to meet with an attorney because there may be some simplified means to handle this. If he had children they also share in his part of the home. You can't avoid probate, but the good news is that there may be several options in probate court - years support (if he died less than two years ago), a regular probate, or a no administration necessary. The wrong choice can be costly, so step one is to see a lawyer.

    - Glen Ashman - geaatl@msn.com - .................. In answering you, I am attempting to communicate general legal information and am not representing you. Do feel free to call me at 404-768-3509 if you wish to discuss actual representation (the phone call also does not retain counsel; that requires an office visit and appropriate paperwork). In that a forum such as this provides me with limited details and doesn't allow me to review details and documents, it is possible that answers here, while meant to be helpful, may in some cases not be complete or accurate, and I highly recommend that you retain legal counsel rather than rely on the answers here. Any information in this communication is for discussion purposes only, and is not offered as legal advice. There is no right to rely on the information contained in this communication and no attorney-client relationship is formed. Nothing in this email is tax-advice. To ensure compliance with IRS Circular 230, any U.S. federal tax advice provided in this communication is not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used by the recipient or any other taxpayer (i) for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties that may be imposed on the recipient or any other taxpayer, or (ii) in promoting, marketing or recommending to another party a partnership or other entity, investment plan, arrangement or other transaction addressed herein.

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