Removing Items Before Probate: Is It Possible?

During probate, a will is proved valid, the property is transferred, and the estate’s assets affairs are settled. If there is no will, a similar process called administration is used to settle the estate.

Can You Empty a House Before Probate?

If you’re an estate executor, you may wonder if removing items from the property is possible before going through probate. Several factors play a role, including the item’s value and whether or not it was explicitly mentioned in the will.

For an executor to distribute the deceased person’s assets, the probate process must be complete.

If a will is present, the executor designated in the will is in charge of following the decedent’s instructions in a probate court. Courts appoint administrators to oversee estates in the absence of a will.

There are certain circumstances where you may be able to remove items from a property before probate.

For example, if you are the executor or administrator of the estate, you may be able to remove personal belongings and sentimental items. The only thing you cannot do during probate is to sell or distribute the assets.

If you are neither the executor nor administrator, you must first get the court’s permission before taking any property out of the estate. The court may allow you to remove items if they are considered personal belongings or if they hold sentimental value.

Ensure that you consult an experienced probate lawyer before attempting to remove any items from a property during probate. Probate laws can be better understood with a probate lawyer, who can help you in legal proceedings.

The Wood Law Group has extensive experience in probate law and can help you with your probate case. We understand the complexities of probate and can help you through every step of the process. If you’ve lost a close family member and need help with probate, contact us today.

What Types of Assets Does Probate Apply to?

In most states, the personal representative must compile a list of all probate assets and their values and submit it to the probate court. This might also be viewed as a list of assets for the will. Some assets, such as bank accounts, are simple to value. Others, such as collectibles, jewelry, and antiques, might need to be appraised.

Probate applies to:

  • Solely owned assets

  • Assets that are not jointly owned

  • Assets that are not payable on death

  • Assets that lack beneficiary designations or are not included in a living trust.

Personal items, including clothing, jewels, collectibles, and household items, also go through probate.

Even if an item has little financial value, it must go through probate to be distributed to the rightful heir. You could be held legally responsible if you attempt to remove any probate assets from the estate.

Assets That Don’t Go Through Probate

Although many assets are required to go through probate, probate is not always necessary. The assets left behind by the deceased and their total value determines whether the estate of a deceased person requires probate.

Bank accounts, retirement plans, life insurance policies, and trust assets with beneficiary designations are non-probate assets that can be transferred directly to beneficiaries. This is true for properties owned through a transfer-on-death deed and those distributed through joint ownership.


How to Value Personal Property for Probate

The probate process may require you to value the deceased person’s personal property before the distribution of assets. Personal property includes any belongings that are not real estate or financial assets. Examples include:

  • Furniture
  • Vehicles
  • Clothing
  • Jewelry
  • Artwork

To evaluate a personal property, you must list every item and calculate its fair market value. An item’s fair market value is the price at which a willing buyer and seller would exchange it.

If you’d like to see what similar valuable items are selling for, you can use online resources such as eBay or Craigslist. You can also consult a professional appraiser for a qualified assessment.

Because the valuation will determine any capital gains tax due on the estate, it is crucial to appraise personal property for probate appropriately.

To determine the value of the personal property in an estate sale and what legal forms are required, you might benefit from speaking trustworthy estate planning attorney. A probate attorney may also be able to help you determine all of the outstanding debts owed by the estate, such as mortgage payments.

At Scrofano Law Group, our knowledgeable and experienced estate planning attorneys can answer all of your probate questions. We can help you determine which items must go through probate and which can be distributed without probate proceedings.

We also understand the probate process can be emotional for family members. Our attorneys will handle the legal aspects of probate so you can focus on your family.

The Length of Probate in Nevada

The probate timeline can vary from a few months to a year or longer, depending on the complexity and size of the estate.

Smaller estates generally settle faster than larger ones. However, it depends on how quickly the executor handles the process. Legal matters such as invalid wills and intestate estates can prolong the process.


Do All Estates Go Through Probate in Nevada?

Nevada does not require all estates to go through probate. Certain estates can avoid probate.

Firstly, Affidavits of entitlement can be used for estates with less than $25,000 of total assets and without real property such as homes or land or interests in a real property like timeshares. A decedent’s surviving spouse who does not own real property and whose estates are less than $100,000 can also benefit from this simplified estate administration.

Also available is the Nevada set-aside, which eliminates the need for formal probate and reduces the length of the process. The court doesn’t need to appoint a legal personal representative, and numerous court proceedings are unnecessary.

In addition, there is a summary administration option for estates up to $300,000. With less court oversight, this is a shortened probate process.

Is Probate a Nightmare to You?

The probate process can be a nightmare if you don’t have an experienced and qualified law firm on your side.

leading probate law firm can provide legal advice and help make the process as smooth and stress-free as possible for you and your loved ones. To ensure a straightforward probate home sale, we can work directly with a real estate agent experienced in probate sales.

Our team of knowledgeable probate lawyers can help you understand the process and take care of the legalities so you can focus on what’s important—remembering your loved one.