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Who Makes the Decision About a Probate Petition?

After the loss of your loved one, you may find yourself charged with the responsibility of administering his or her estate. Typically, the first step in this process is to file a petition with the appropriate probate court. If your loved one lived in San Diego, you file your petition in the Superior Court of San Diego. Next, the judge overseeing the estate’s probate administration will make a decision as to whether to approve or deny it.

How a Probate Examiner Helps the Judge Make a Decision on the Petition:

While the judge is the ultimate decision maker, in most cases the judge is assisted by a probate examiner. The probate examiner is a staff member of the court. The probate examiner has many responsibilities when it comes to the decision-making on the initial petition, including the following:

  • First of all, carefully reviewing the entire file for the estate.
  • Then,ensuring that all of the California probate laws are complied with.
  • Furthermore, making a recommendation to the judge assigned to the case as to whether it should be approved or denied.

After reviewing the findings of the probate examiner, the judge will make a decision and either approve/deny the petition. If you disagree with the recommendation that was made by the probate examiner, you do not have to simply accept it. You may request a hearing in front of the judge assigned to the case. At this hearing, you will be given the opportunity to present your case to the judge.

We hope that this article provided the answers that you are looking for. When you are ready to learn more about the probate administration process, we encourage you to review our free guide, Understand What to Expect During a California Estate Administration.

Related Links:

Types of Petitions to Start a Probate

Tips to Prevent a Probate Petition Rejection

Scott Grossman

Scott Grossman


The Grossman Law Firm, APC · 525 B Street, Suite 1500, San Diego, CA 92101 · (951) 523-8307

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