Real Estate not in your loved one’s trust? You may need a Heggstad Petition filed in the San Diego Probate court.
If your loved one has passed away with a trust, you may find that their home was never formally transferred into the trust before death. This may be because a deed was never recorded with the county, or perhaps the home was taken out of the trust for refinancing purposes and never transferred back. Without property in the trust, the trust has no ability to avoid the Probate process in California. Luckily there is a method for transferring property into a trust after death that is available in the San Diego Probate court.
A “Heggstad” Petition (also known as a petition under the California Probate Code section § 850) allows you to transfer real estate or personal property into your loved one’s trust after their death. This is a great benefit to those acting as an Executor or Trustee because a Heggstad Petition is far cheaper than a formal Probate and requires less time to complete.
To allow a Heggstad Petition rather than a formal Probate estate administration, a court will look to several factors in your loved one’s trust. The most determinative fact is whether the real estate was actually listed on a “Schedule of Assets” in the trust document. This is a listing of all the major assets that are being transferred into the trust on the day of signing. Even if a new deed was never recorded that formally transferred that real estate into the trust, if the Schedule of Assets specifically mentions the property it may be possible to use a Heggstad Petition and avoid a formal Probate in court.
If you are settling your loved one’s affairs as their Executor or Successor Trustee, you should contact a local North County San Diego Probate attorney to determine whether a Probate is required, or whether a Heggstad or other Petition may be utilized instead. The Probate attorneys at Willis Legal Team represent individuals and families in closing their loved one’s estate. We are local lawyers serving Oceanside, Encinitas, Carlsbad, Vista and San Marcos.
Call us at (760) 213-4878 or use a contact form on our website for a free consultation. We look forward to helping you and your family.