Explaining the Uniform Probate Code

On Behalf of | Jun 6, 2023 | Probate, Wills

When a person passes away in Georgia, especially if that person has significant assets or multiple heirs or claimants, the process of resolving their estate can be complicated. And each state’s probate process is different, which can further the confusion during a difficult time after a loved one’s passing.

The Uniform Probate Code (UPC) is an attempt to standardize the probate process. Some states have adopted the UPC thus far for wills and probate, but not all have done so.

The probate process

Probate is the method for resolving someone’s will or estate after their passing. During the probate process, any will that the decedent created is resolved, and an executor manages the disposition of the estate to heirs and family members. The executor also takes care of any last financial obligations of the deceased.

The Unified Probate Code

Probate can oftentimes become a contentious and complex situation, and the UPC tries to mitigate some of those problems.

The UPC consists of seven main articles, each of which codifies some aspect of the updated probate process.

Probably the most important is Article III, which establishes “unsupervised administration” in certain situations. If a will isn’t being contested and the amount of assets is relatively modest, the executor is allowed to resolve the estate without direct supervision from the probate court.

In theory, unsupervised administration allows probate courts to focus their attention and resources on only the probate cases that require adjudication, letting simpler estates resolve themselves outside the court’s direct purview.

However, results so far from states that have adopted the UPC are mixed. In many cases, the complexities the UPC attempts to do away with continue to occur. Further, many estates fall outside the bounds of probate, so the UPC doesn’t apply.