The Probate Process in Florida
Helpful Tips for Florida Residents and Non-Florida Residents: A probate Primer from Bonnie Rhoden, Esquire
The Brevard County Probate Process
The main courthouses for Brevard County are located in Titusville, Viera, and Melbourne and serve over a half million residents in this area of eastern central Florida which is also home to Cape Canaveral, the Kennedy Space Center, and Harris Corporation. The county seat and historic courthouse is located at 700 South Park Avenue, Titusville. For more information about the Brevard County court information visit the 18th Circuit site. Brevard County is within the 18th Judicial Court and 5th District Court of Appeal system. To visit the main Brevard county site for information go to the official Brevard County website.
Read the Top 5 Things to remember during probate.
Florida Probate administration is the court or legal process necessary to identify and marshall all the assets, debts and other information for a deceased person (“decedent”). The probate process ensures the debts that should be paid are properly paid and the assets are distributed to the person identified in the decedent’s Last Will or by Florida’s probate laws. The persons due assets are known as beneficiaries and those claiming debts are owed by the deceased person are referred to as creditors.
Read more about how to keep assets out of probate.
The decedent’s Last Will and Testament must be filed with the Court and the Judge will issue a document or Order Admitting Will, this is called “Admitting the Will” to Probate. If the will is found to be void, invalid or otherwise defective it will be entirely ineffective to transfer assets to the beneficiaries. When a person’s will is found to be void or if they lack a will entirely he or she is said to have died intestate – a fancy way to say “no will”. An intestate probate will distribute the assets of the deceased according to Florida’s laws of intestacy. These laws dictate how and to whom assets will flow.
If a resident owns property in Florida and dies, that property must be handled in accordance with Florida’s Intestate Succession code. The probate must take place in the decedent’s home county such as Brevard, Volusia, Osceola, Seminole, or Orange County.
Read the article What You Need to Know About Probate here.
When a person who is a non-Florida resident owns property here in Florida, when he/she dies that property must be handled under the Florida laws of probate in the county where the property is located. The process for a deceased non-Florida resident’s property in Florida is Ancillary Probate or “extra” probate. This is because the main probate process will take place in the decedent’s home state.
Read more: What to Do If Your Parent, Grandparent or Relative Passes Away
Bonnie Klein Rhoden and the firm represent clients living outside of Florida but who need to use the process of Florida Probate Ancillary Administration. An example of such a client relationship forms when a person living in North Carolina (the primary residence) also owns a house in Melbourne, Florida dies – that property falls under Florida’s probate code. The attorneys at Rhoden Law Group can efficiently handle probate matters for non-Florida resident in any Florida location including Tallahassee, Miami, Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa, Palm Beach, and all other cities in Florida as well as out of state clients needing to probate property located here in Florida.
For probate assistance in Florida, Florida Probate Attorney Bonnie Klein Rhoden will guide you through the necessary steps of probate. The law firm of Rhoden Law Group has offices to serve you and represents clients throughout all of Florida in probate matters.
Clients have choices when choosing a Probate Attorney in Florida. Ms. Rhoden graduated summa cum laude from Florida Institute of Technology and received her J.D. from the private law school associated with prestigious Barry University in Miami, Florida. We encourage you to contact us for your Florida Probate needs. We provide a free initial consultation to all new clients. Call or text 321-549-3162 or use the Contact form on this site to email Attorney Rhoden.
Municipalities and Areas in Brevard County include:
- Merritt Island
- Cape Canaveral
- Town of Melbourne Beach
- South Melbourne Beach
- Cocoa and Cocoa Beach
- Town of Grant and Valkaria
- Indian Harbour Beach
- Satellite Beach
- Patrick Air Force Base (PAFB)
- Palm Shores
- Suntree area
- Baytree area
- Viera and Rockledge
- Melbourne Beach
- The Town of Melbourne Village
- Palm Bay
- City of Rockledge
- Canaveral Groves
- West Melbourne
Call today to speak to our experienced probate attorney about your particular needs. Consultations are always complimentary 321-549-3162
Read more about common estate planning documents:
- Durable Power of Attorney
- Living Will
- Health Care Surrogate Designation
- Last Will and Testament