In other words, why would a beneficiary use the foregoing document over probating a will via court.
You would use the affidavit as a way to avoid probate. Probate Code Section 13100 is a "small estate" exception to probate.
Because of time and cost. If the estate is worth (for example) $140,000 and it's probated, then I am entitled to charge $5,200 to assist you with the probate. Add another $790 (or more) for court filing fees (2 hearings @ $395/ea) and $100 to $450 to file the required Notice of Petition for Probate with a newspaper and the cost would be at least $6,000 (plus, the executor can also charge $5,200 which would raise the probate cost to at least $11,200).
On the other hand, you might be able to prepare the Affidavit yourself - or if you have a lawyer help you, the cost should still be $500 or less.
So ... would you rather pay approximately $500 (for an affidavit) or $6,000 to $11,200 for a probate?
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The attorneys above make excellent points. In addition to cost effectiveness, the affidavit is a much simpler process to have property of a decedent be confirmed to a beneficiary/heir. Probating a will generally takes a minimum of six months.
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