Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Pennsylvania

short certificate

what is a short certificate and how do i get one

Asked on 5/13/08, 1:39 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Miriam Jacobson Law Offices of Miriam N. Jacobson
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Re: short certificate

A short certificate is issued by the Register of Wills as evidence that an estate has been opened and someone has been appointed as personal representative [executor or administrator] for the estate.

It is generally required in order to do anything respecting the decedent's estate, such as change bank accounts from the individual to the estate, etc. It is presented instead of showing the original Letters Testamentary or Letters of Administration that actually make the appointment.

Several "shorts" may be requested, and issued by the Register, each of which serve as originals to be given to the institution requiring it.

The estate is opened in the County where the deceased resided at the time of death.

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Answered on 5/13/08, 3:53 pm

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