Top 7 Most Frequently Asked Questions on Florida Probate.


What exactly is Florida Probate?

  • Probate is the legal process that makes sure that the assets of someone who has passed away are distributed correctly. This process is done through your local probate court. 

Is it ever too late to start the Florida Probate process?

  • Technically no, but we do highly recommend starting the Florida Probate process in a timely manner. This is because documents, statements, bills, and other important information could and will be misplaced over the years which could delay the Probate process even further. 

Do I need an attorney to go through Florida Probate?

  • Yes, in most cases you will need a Florida Probate attorney to move forward in petitioning the court for a Formal Administration. Although, there is an exception which would be a disposition without administration but is for very small estates. Even going through this process, a disposition without administration can be very complex and we suggest navigating these waters with a knowledgeable Florida Probate Attorney

How long does the Florida Probate process take from start to finish? 

  • Depending on the type of Florida Probate process one is going through, which could be either a Formal Probate Administration or a Summary Administration, the process could take less than a month or up to 9 months. This all depends on the complexity of the estate. 

Who are the parties that have to be involved going through the Florida Probate process?

  • The parties involved in the process would be the Court Clerk of the county the person passed away in, judge, attorney, those filing to inherit assets, and potentially the IRS.

Who cannot serve as a personal representative?

  • Individuals who cannot serve as a personal representative in a Florida Probate process would be individuals under the age of 18, those who are not mentally or physically able to perform duties, or those convicted of a felony. 

Who will serve as the personal representative if there is no Will?

  • In the case there is no Will, the surviving spouse will be appointed as the personal representative. Though in the case the spouse declines, the majority selected heir will be appointed. But in the case that the heirs cannot come to a conclusion on who will be selected, the court will make the final decision. 

As you can see, the Florida Probate process can be quite complex, and we highly recommend speaking to an attorney before you decide to take any action of your own. Stivers Law based out of Miami, FL has handled hundreds of cases throughout the State of Florida.

If you found this article valuable, we’d love for you to speak with a member of our team to discuss how we can help you through the Florida probate process. Please call us at 305-456-3255 or fill out the Contact Us page and we will contact you right away. And for those who would like to do more research – we have you covered! Download our free guide today titled: “A Love One Has Died – Now What?” to learn more about the Florida probate process.

Thank you for your interest in Stivers Law and we look forward to speaking with you soon.

As a reminder, the information provided on this blog article is only to be used for general informational purposes and not intended to be used as legal advice.  

Author Bio

Justin Stivers is the founder and managing attorney of Stivers Law, an estate planning firm specializing in wills, probate, trust administration, and financial risk management services. Justin’s approach goes beyond just creating legal documents. From aligning investments with estate plans to ensuring comprehensive insurance coverage, he safeguards a client’s legacy from unforeseen circumstances. His commitment extends beyond individual transactions, fostering lifelong partnerships to provide ongoing support and guidance.

With an impressive track record, Justin is licensed by the Florida and the Tennessee State Bars. His professional portfolio boasts Series 65 registration as a Registered Investment Advisor, the Wealth Management Specialist™ designation, and a 2-15 License for Health, Life, and Annuities. His dedication to excellence has earned him positions like Board Member of the Estate Planning Council of Greater Miami, Business Eagle Member of the Florida Justice Association, and active membership in esteemed organizations like the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys.

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