Georgia offers a probate shortcut for "small estates." This makes it easier for survivors to transfer property left by a person who has died. You may be able to transfer a large amount of property using the following probate shortcut -- saving time, money, and hassle.
Georgia has a simplified probate process for small estates. To use it, an executor files a written request with the local probate court asking to use the simplified procedure. The court may authorize the executor to distribute the assets without having to jump through the hoops of regular probate.
You can use the simplified small estate process in Georgia if there is no will, the estate owes no debts, and all who are legally entitled to receive property (heirs) have amicably agreed on how to divide the property.
The petition must include the following information:
Each heir must sign the petition and have their signature notarized. If the deceased person owned real property, the court files a copy of the order in the county where real property is located that no administration was necessary. This copy is recorded in the deed records of the county and indexed by the deceased person's name so it shows the legal transfer of the real property from the deceased person to the heir. Ga. Code Ann. § § 53-2-40 and following.
For help determining if an estate qualifies for o.25ne of these probate shortcuts, or handling an estate in general, see The Executor's Guide, by Mary Randolph (Nolo), or Estate Planning Basics, by Denis Clifford (Nolo).