Not every will needs to go through probate

On Behalf of | May 12, 2022 | Probate, Wills

Preparing your will or estate plan is a must in the state of Georgia. This will be the best way to make sure that your property and other assets are divided in the way you wish. However, there are plenty of circumstances under which a will may still have to go through probate. Here are a few of the notable exceptions.

Property that is held in joint names

There are plenty of issues that involve a different understanding of wills and probate. One of them will concern assets owned in joint names with a spouse, children, or others. If the asset is held jointly with rights of survivorship, it will pass by law to the surviving owner. Probate is not needed.

However, there are some restrictions on the right of survivorship. You do not have the right to include your ownership interest in the property in your will or estate plan. You also cannot pass it on to anyone but a co-owner. Even if such a clause is specifically included in a will, the court won’t abide by it.

Property that designates a specific beneficiary

There are other ways by which you can avoid the process of probate. Certain assets such as life insurance policies, 401(k)s, IRAs, and annuities will generally be able to bypass probate. This is because they are considered to be “payable on death” to one or more people who have been specially named in advance as beneficiaries to the assets.

The most crucial detail to keep in mind here is that your will only bequeaths property that can pass on to a living beneficiary. It will do this through the normal due process of law. This will be the best way for all your listed assets to avoid probate.