Every estate begins with the court fees. The Conroe county clerk won’t even take your papers unless you pay the estate filing fee. So before you get started with a probate attorney in The Woodlands you will need to budget for the court fee. In addition to the expenses below, you will also need enough for a retainer and in many cases a publication charge.
The Conroe Probate Court fees vary with the type of case you are filing. The biggest difference is between cases where the deceased had a valid Will and cases where they did not. If there is not a valid Will then the type of Estate is called Intestate.
Typical Probate Fees
As of January 1, their 2017 filing fee for these types of cases is $358:
- Probate of Will;
- Probate of Will as Muniment of Title;
- Temporary of Permanent Administration;
- Administration with Will Annexed;
- Community Administration;
- Small Estate Affidavit.
Intestate Estate Filing Fee
If the person passed away without a Last Will and Testament, then they are intestate. They could also be intestate if they had a Will, but it wasn’t valid. This usually happens when someone makes a mistake with a do it yourself form.
When you are intestate you go through a Declaration of Heirship procedure. In that process the court searches for heirs to make sure they don’t leave anybody out. They do this by hiring an ad litem to conduct a search, which you have to pay for. This costs the family more in court fees and related expenses.
The 2017 filing fee for a Declaration of Heirship is a whopping $679. This is one of the reasons why you create a Will, because it saves your beneficiaries time in court and a good deal of money.
Probate of a Foreign Will
Another variety of case is probate of a foreign Will. This might not mean what you would think it means. It is not referring to situations where a Texas resident dies with a Will from another State. What it does refer to is when another State is the site of the probate case but the deceased owned real estate in Texas. The Executor of the out of state probate case needs to open an ancillary estate here in Texas because of the real estate.The fee for Probate of a Foreign Will is $279.
Contact a probate attorney in The Woodlands when you’re ready to get started.
The Conroe Clerk’s fees usually increase on September 1 of each year.