Probate is the court process of transferring the decedent’s assets to the heirs. The type of probate depends on how much the estate is worth. This specific post focuses solely on Set Aside Estates, which are estates valued at less than $100,000.
The difference between this and an affidavit of entitlement (discussed in a previous post) when you are a surviving spouse and your estate is less than $100,000 is that you would do an Affidavit of Entitlement if there’s no real property and you are a surviving spouse. If there is real property, you can’t do the Affidavit of Entitlement. You have to do a Set Aside. Please note that when we’re talking about real property, we are only considering the equity in the property. For example, if you have a $500,000 home, but you only have 50,000 in equity, then that would still be considered a Set Aside because the actual asset is only worth $50,000.
You must wait 30 days after death before you petition the court for a Set Aside. You also have to notice any known creditors of the estate. Set Asides generally only require one court hearing and you can usually get them done fairly quickly.
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