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Does a Surviving Spouse Have to Go Through Probate?

By Barry Peters | Jul 9, 2019

It is perhaps the most common question we are asked about probate. Does a surviving spouse have to go through probate?

The answer is that, yes, a surviving spouse must go through probate. There is no exemption from probate, even when the surviving spouse is entitled to inherit everything.

So, unless steps were taken while both spouses were alive, plan on the surviving spouse going through probate.

For those who want to shield the surviving spouse from this requirement, a Family Trust is the best defense. With a Living Trust or Family Trust, not only will the surviving spouse avoid probate, but probate will also be avoided when that spouse later passes away.

Client Reviews
Daniel made the entire process simple and easy to understand. He took our questions and made sure we understood all the legal aspects and responsibilities seamless. Neal V.
We want to thank Matt, he was very helpful in answering our questions and walking us through the process of setting up our Family Trust. Charlotte G.
Marcus West was so helpful in setting up our trust. We had several questions and a lot of properties to manage. He was professional & has a great personality. Pamela B.
Ben, you were very thorough in your explanations, answered all of our questions & we would be happy to put our names to referrals for you. Darrell C.
Hello, Ben. Thank you for your assistance with out trust. Your simple, concise, efficient instructions and explanations were easy to understand and follow. We were pleasantly surprised how quickly you were able to get everything set up and ready to go. Desta R.