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  July 09, 2019

One of the first questions the family of a loved one that has passed will ask is, “What will it cost to settle the estate?”

Key Factors Determining Cost 

The answer to this question depends on four key factors:

  1. What are the assets to be transferred?
  2. Were there beneficiary or payable on death (POD) designations made on assets?
  3. Was there a will?
  4. Do the heirs get along with each other. 

    estate and probate paper with a sealed stamp

Depending on the answers to these questions, the cost of settling an estate can vary tremendously, from a thousand dollars to many thousands of dollars. There is no blanket answer to this question. 


Over the next few weeks, I will outline several different types of probate, administration, and probate alternatives, and the likely costs of each. Also, I will discuss when each different type of proceeding would be best. 

If there is a will, the probate might be either as a muniment of title or an independent administration (assuming the will was properly drawn to provide for independent administration).

If there is no will, the “probate” (which is legally an administration rather than a “probate”) might be handled through a small estate affidavit proceeding, determination of heirship, with or without an accompanying independent or dependent administration, or a full dependent administration. Which type of action would be required is completely dependent on a broad facts and circumstances.


Please read my follow-up blogs explaining more about when each type of action would be best, and the likely costs of that proceeding.   

If you would like to talk about more about probate or administration of an estate, please call Adair M. Buckner for a free initial consultation.*

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*(The free consultation does not cover actual review of documents or giving legal advice on a specific situation.)

** Please remember that the cost estimates given are only general, ballpark numbers for the Amarillo area and the costs can vary widely depending on many variables in your individual situation.

Article Topics:
Estate Planning Probate