Does an affidavit of heirship have to be filled out before a judge in court or just filled out and signed by a notary?

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Does an affidavit of heirship have to be filled out before a judge in court or just filled out and signed by a notary?

My father in law passed away last month. He was not married and left no will.
He has 3 kids my husband being the oldest. He had no physical property other
than a car and some personal belongings. However, he had a small life
insurance policy from work and a small retirement fund. We received the
paperwork about these funds and they are requiring an affidavit of heirship as
he left no beneficiary or will. My husband and his siblings have decided for my
husband to do all the filing and we will split it accordingly. I have been doing
some online research and am just a little unsure about the affidavit of heirship.
Is this something he can fill out and take to a notary? Or does he have to fill it
out and take it to the court in the county he lived in?

Asked on December 17, 2017 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  No, the Probate Court does not generally get involved with preparation of or execution of the Affidavit of Heirship.  It may pay for you all to hire an attorney for the specific purpose of drafting same and proceeding to Probate if required.  Good luck.


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