Probate

Is an Executor Required to be a US Citizen?

June 17, 2015

I recently received a phone call from someone whose wife was not a US Citizen. The caller wondered whether his wife could nevertheless serve as an executor of his Will. There is no statutory restriction in Texas that prevents a non-citizen from serving as an executor or administrator of an estate. The statutes only restrict […]

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Who May File an Application to Determine Heirship in Texas?

March 11, 2015

When an individual dies without a Will, a procedure called a Determination of Heirship proceeding can be filed establish the deceased individual’s rightful heirs. An application to determine heirship may be filed by any of the following people: The “qualified personal representative of the estate” in cases where there has been no administration of an […]

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Do I Need an Attorney to Probate a Will in Texas?

December 17, 2014

I get phone calls and emails each week from Texans who have lost friends and family members. Often, they have been named as independent executors and need information about probating a Will. The first question they ask is whether it will be necessary to retain an attorney to go through the probate process. In most cases, the answer is: “Yes.” […]

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Can The Beneficiary Of My Estate Also Be My Executor?

September 10, 2014

I’ve received several emails the past few weeks asking whether it is possible for a beneficiary of an estate to also serve as executor. Naming someone as the executor of your estate does not preclude him or her from inheriting from you. In fact, the executor can and often is a beneficiary of the estate. […]

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What is an Affidavit of Heirship?

April 23, 2014

When someone dies owning real estate, that property cannot be sold or transferred until the dededent’s name is removed from the title. Probate records become a link in the chain of title, demonstrating that the decedent’s property has passed to someone else. But in cases where the decedent’s only asset is real estate, and there […]

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What is a Lady Bird Deed?

March 17, 2014

A “Lady Bird Deed” is another name for an enhanced life estate deed, which allows a property owner to transfer property at death without the necessity of probate. It is nicknamed “Lady Bird” because many people think that President Lyndon B. Johnson conveyed some land to his wife using this type of deed, although there […]

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