What is Probate?
Probate is the process in which the probate judge formally determines whether the will offered to the court is valid and approves the named executor and/or qualifies an administrator for the estate when no will exists. Probate is mandated in Georgia if the decedent owned real estate property and requires preparing and filing the petition, notifying, and serving the heirs or obtaining signatures of all heirs of the decedent before it is accepted by the court. If all heirs consent, a representative can be appointed rather quickly. If any heir objects to the petition, the probate becomes contested and can unreasonably delay the appointment of an administrator for probate for months or years.
What is Probate Administration?
Probate Administration is the process of managing the estate affairs until the estate is formally closed by the court upon Petition for Discharge by the administrator or attorney. Management includes notifying and paying creditors, reimbursing expenses, distributing assets, filing tax returns, paying taxes and filing an accounting with the court when required.