Back to the Learning Center

By: Scott Grossman on September 15th, 2016

Do You Need Both a Trust and Probate Administration in California?

Generally, probate administration in California is necessary when a decedent passes owning property in his or her individual name. These assets must pass through the probate process with the court overseeing the administration. Conversely, trust administration is a process that typically does not require the oversight of the probate court except in certain circumstances. This process is available for assets that move into the trust. Many families are able to avoid the probate process entirely. They do this with various estate planning techniques that include moving assets into a trust. In some cases, however, both a trust and probate administration may be required in California.

Here are some common situations that may lead to the need for both a trust and probate administration:

  1. Both a California will and a trust were left by the decedent.
  2. Decedent had begun the process of moving assets into a trust, but had not completed the process at the time that he or she passed away.
  3. The decedent owned some assets in his or her individual name, without a joint owner of the asset who had a right of survivorship.
  4. The decedent had moved assets into a trust, but forgot to update the beneficiary designations on his or her 401(k).
  5. Decedent had a named beneficiary on a life insurance policy who has since died.
  6. The decedent owns personal property, such as valuable artwork, that was did not move into the trust.
  7. The decedent owned real estate jointly and the rest of the assets in a trust, but the co-owner of the property predeceased him or her or passed away simultaneously.
  8. A trust and a pour-over will is present, but never funded the trust during the decedent’s lifetime.

Our article, When Both Probate and Trust Administration Are Necessary in California, provides more information about this topic. If you face a need to conduct both a trust and a probate administration in California, you require the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney. Contact an experienced San Diego probate court attorney at the Grossman Law Firm today to learn more. Call our office at (888) 443-6590.