Back to the Learning Center

By: Scott Grossman on January 20th, 2023

What assets go through probate in California?

Not all of a decedent’s assets go through the California probate process. The probate process may not even be necessary if the deceased had no titled assets to their name. The California Probate Code provides that estates of $100,000 or less do not need to be probated.

Other assets that will not go through the California probate process:

  • Assets that were in joint tenancy and will go to the joint owner could be land, property, vehicles, or a bank account, for instance
  • Life insurance policies, IRAs, and similar contracts with named beneficiaries
  • Assets owned through a living trust
  • Also, assets are registered in the decedent’s name and are “transferable on death” to another person.
  • Furthermore, assets are registered by a married couple as community property with the right of survivorship.
  • All assets that go to a surviving spouse, including those that the deceased person owned separately in their name but were left in a will or by intestate succession to the surviving spouse

There is also a simplified legal process to avoid probate and assign assets to a spouse if there are no objections. It is called the Spousal Property Petition, and only a husband and wife can take advantage of this procedure. If you have additional questions about the California probate process, contact a qualified California probate attorney at 888-433-6590 today.