Probate Court

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Definition of 'Probate Court'

Probate court is a court that oversees the administration of estates of deceased persons. The court is responsible for ensuring that the deceased's assets are distributed according to their will or, if there is no will, according to the laws of the state.

Probate court can be a complex and time-consuming process, but it is important to go through the process in order to ensure that the deceased's wishes are carried out and that their assets are distributed to the correct beneficiaries.

The probate process typically begins with the filing of a petition for probate. The petition is filed by the executor of the will or, if there is no will, by the next-of-kin. The petition must include the deceased's name, date of death, and place of death. It must also include a list of the deceased's assets and debts.

Once the petition is filed, the court will appoint a personal representative to oversee the administration of the estate. The personal representative is responsible for collecting the deceased's assets, paying their debts, and distributing their assets to the beneficiaries.

The probate process can take several months or even years to complete. The length of time it takes depends on the complexity of the estate and the number of assets involved.

If you are the executor of a will or the next-of-kin of a deceased person, it is important to speak to an attorney about the probate process. An attorney can help you understand your rights and responsibilities and can guide you through the probate process.

Here are some additional resources on probate court:

* [The American Bar Association's website on probate court](https://www.americanbar.org/groups/probate_and_trust_law/resources/probate_courts/)
* [The National Association of Probate Judges' website](https://www.napj.org/)
* [The National Probate Resource Center's website](https://www.probateresourcecenter.org/)

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