Glossary Of Common Probate Terms
The intent of this glossary is to provide individuals going through probate with a general understanding of terms commonly used in Probate Law and their application. The definitions within this document are not comprehensive and are not intended to serve as a substitute for independent research of the law or for a probate attorney. We have however, reviewed the terms and we have worked with members of the law to check and review our content to provide you with the best and most up to date information. We believe that probate can be confusing and understanding the different terms is very important to navigate the process.
If you have any questions or would like to contribute to our glossary, please feel free to visit our contact page.
- Taxable Estate The fair market value of all assets owned by a decedent at the date of death (gross estate) should not exceed certain amounts. The total gross estate can include debts from previous years, last illness and funeral expenses as well legal fees(...) Read More
- Tenancy in common A type of joint ownership that allows a person to sell his share or leave it in a will without the consent of the other owners. If a person dies without a will, his share goes to his heirs, not to the other owners. The tenancy in common can(...) Read More
- Testamentary Disposition A will can be considered to have a testamentary disposition of property if it leaves specific items, such as money and possessions. Leaving property at one's death, most often through a will. The person making the disposition retains(...) Read More
- Testamentary trust A testamentary trust is created by the provisions in a will and typically comes into existence after the writer of the will dies. A testamentary trust is a legal entity that starts upon someone's death. The will names the trustee to manage(...) Read More
- Testate Testate means having a legal will. For a will to be legal and valid it must be written and notarized. The will should fully cover the details of your estate and distribution to beneficiaries after death. The person acting as a witness for this(...) Read More
- Testator The person who makes a will. If you write a handwritten will and sign it yourself then you are the testator of a holographic will which is not accepted in certain states. Even when you hire an attorney to draft a will for you, you are the(...) Read More
- Title Ownership of property. Real property has a title that can be thought of as a bill of ownership. Title is important If you are an heir in probate then you do not technically have the title to any of the decedent's assets like a car title(...) Read More
- Totten trust A bank account in your name for which you name a beneficiary. Upon the death of the named holder of the account the money transfers automatically to the beneficiary. Depositing one's own money in a bank account for the benefit of another(...) Read More
- Trust A trust is a legal arrangement in which one person, the trustee, holds property for the benefit of another person, the beneficiary. The trustee can be an individual or a corporation, and the beneficiary can be an individual, a group of people,(...) Read More
- Trust Accounting An estate accounting is different from trust accounting because of the time and purpose for which it takes place, however, trust accounting follows a similar procedure with that of an estate in probate. As the trustee is also required to(...) Read More
- Trustee A trustee is a person or institution that oversees and manages a trust. There are professional trustees who's career revolves around managing trusts. Trustees are important Trustees are important because they control the trust including(...) Read More
- Trustor A person who transfers assets into a trust for the benefit of another. It's important to be clear about which role this individual will have with regard to managing those funds; they can either act as grantor (someone granting you legal(...) Read More