Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Georgia

Death that occurs before closing on contracted property.

My mother and father both live in Alabama. They had property for sale in Georgia that was under contract to close next week. My father died before the closing date. The will states that everything goes to the surviving spouse, without order of the court. Q1) Does my mother have to probate the will? Q2) Can the closing proceed without the official death certificate? (We hope to receive the official before the closing date) With this being a holiday week, I am unable to get answers from anyone. Your help is greatly appreciated.

Asked on 11/24/06, 6:45 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Glen Ashman Ashman Law Office also dba Glen Ashman Attorney

Re: Death that occurs before closing on contracted property.

Without seeing the deed no one here can answer.

If the property is held as tenants in common, the sale cannot happen without a probate and will be delayed for a god while.

If there is a joint tenancy with survivorship, no probate is needed, but I cannot imagine a closing attorney closing without the death certificate.

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Answered on 11/24/06, 7:11 pm

Re: Death that occurs before closing on contracted property.

My condolences to you and your family. If your parents did not own the property JTWROS (with joint rights of survivorship), you will want to intitiate probate as soon as possible. If they did own the property JTWROS, then the attorney who will conduct the closing ceremony will be able to advise you what is required; however, frequently a certified copy of the death certificate is requested.

The above information is provided as a courtesy and does not create or imply the existence of an attorney-client relationship.

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Answered on 11/24/06, 7:19 pm

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