Do Wills Have To Be Probated In Georgia?

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Do Wills Have To Be Probated In Georgia - how to avoid probate in Georgia - how long do you have to probate a will in Georgia

Do wills have to be probated in Georgia?

Maybe you’re a beneficiary worried that the executor won’t probate the will. 

Or you’re the executor considering not probating the will. 

Either way, this article will cover:

  • do wills have to be probated in Georgia
  • what happens to the executor if they do not probate the will
  • what happens to the estate if the will is not probated
  • what you need to probate the will
  • how to probate a will

When the courts appoint an administrator to an estate, they can choose anyone. This includes creditors or third-party companies. Meaning you and your family lose all control over the estate.

If you want to create a will for your estate or file a petition to become the administrator of an estate, fill out the form below for a free consultation. Free consultations are first come first serve. We always run out of slots. Make sure you get yours locked in now.

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Do Wills Have To Be Probated In Georgia?

When discussing, “Do wills have to be probated in Georgia,” let’s look at:

  • whether you have to probate a will
  • how long you have to probate a will
  • what happens if you don’t probate a will

Do You Have To Probate A Will In Georgia?

Yes, wills have to be probated in Georiga. 

Georgia requires wills to be filed with the probate courts

Every estate has to go through the probate process. 

If you don’t probate a will in Georgia, the estate gets distributed per the intestate laws.

It’s in your best interest to probate a will. 

That way, the will gets distributed per the will’s instructions

And is not left up to the courts to make decisions on who gets what. 

Related: What If The Executor Does Not Probate The Will

How Long Do You Have To Probate A Will In Georgia?

You have to file the will with the Clerk’s office within 18 months of someone dying

Then, you have 5 years to probate that will in Georgia. 

This is 5 years AFTER you have filed the will with the Clerk’s office

Related: How Long Do You Have To Probate A Will In Georgia?

Do You Have To Go Through Probate If You Have A Will?

Yes, you have to go through probate even if you have a will. 

Let’s talk about the consequences of not probating a will.

  • Personal Liability. The executor can be sued or imprisoned for not probating a will.
  • Clouded Title. Without probate, when someone dies, the property remains in their name.
  • Litigation. Heirs and creditors can sue the executor for losses from not probating a will.

Related: What An Executor Cannot Do

What Happens If You Don't Probate A Will?

We’re discussing “do wills have to be probated in Georgia?”

So, what happens if you don’t probate a will?

If you don’t probate a will, the estate gets distributed per intestacy laws in Georgia. 

When the executor doesn’t probate the will:

  • legal title to assets can be clouded
  • there are legal claims against the executor

When someone passes away, the property is still in their name. 

Probating a will transfers that property into the beneficiaries’ names. 

This allows them to sell the property

These properties cannot get passed to the beneficiaries if no probate is filed.

And when you probate a will, property gets distributed to creditors and heirs

If you don’t probate a will, they will not receive what is legally theirs. 

And they have the right to sue the executor of the estate

The executor will be personally liable to repay them for any losses.  

Related: Penalty For Stealing From An Estate

How To Avoid Probate In Georgia

There are three ways to avoid probate in Georgia.

  • place your assets in a living trust
  • name beneficiary on your accounts
  • own assets jointly

Strategies For Avoiding Probate In Georgia

There are three strategies for legally avoiding probate in Georgia

  • place your assets in a living trust
  • name beneficiaries on your accounts
  • own assets jointly

Related: Can The Executor Of A Will Take Everything

How To File A Will In Georgia

Since wills have to be probated in Georiga, let’s talk about how to file a will. 

Check out “How To File A Will In Georgia” for a deep dive into these steps. 

  1. Find The Last Will And Testament In Georgia
  2. Review The Testator’s Signature And Witnesses
  3. Locate And Review Self-Proving Affidavit
  4. Contact Witnesses For The Will In Georgia
  5. Find The Named Executor
  6. Verify The Beneficiaries Of The Will In Georgia
  7. Locate The Heirs Named In The Will
  8. Hire A Probate Lawyer In Georgia
  9. Figure Out Which Georgia Probate Form You Need
  10. File The Petition For Probate
  11. Swear In The Executor
  12. Pay Off Creditors And Debts

What Happens If A Will Is Not Filed?

If a will is not filed, creditors and heirs can sue the executor

If an executor doesn’t file a will for financial gain, they could face criminal charges

And, in both cases, the executor is financially responsible for the losses of other parties. 

According to Georgia probate laws, the courts can fine and imprison the executor

And they will keep you imprisoned until the will gets filed. 

Related: Can An Executor Override A Beneficiary

When Do You Have To Probate A Will?

In Georgia, a will has to be filed within 18 months of the person passing away. 

After that, you have 5 years to probate a will in Georgia. 

If you do not probate a will within 5 years, the estate gets split up per intestate laws

Related: Executor Not Communicating With Beneficiaries

When Do Wills Have To Be Probated In Georgia?

If you want the best probate attorneys to represent you, fill out the form below.

We have the experience needed to ensure that your rights are protected.

This means that you don’t wrongfully lose assets to creditors.

We also make sure that the probate process is smooth and fair.

This means you don’t get raked over the coals financially.

After you fill out the form below, we will set up your free consultation.

Talk soon.

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