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Probate may be defined as a court process for determining whether a Will is valid.   A Will is probated or proved by offering evidence to show that it is the Will of the deceased and signing and witnessing of the Will meet legal requirements.  In a broad sense, the term covers the entire administration process. 

The purpose of court administration is to:

a.   Help protect the rights of heirs, devisees and creditors.

b.  Protect against unfair and incorrect appraisals of an estate's assets.

c.   Assure collection of Federal and state death taxes.

d. Facilitate an orderly distribution of the remainder of the estate.


The list of tasks required of a personal representative when settling an estate is long. The job is easier if an estate check list of required or desired actions is made. This list (downloadable in PDF format) should be discussed with the attorney, if one is employed, to determine what steps are required and by what dates they should be completed.

As the listed jobs are completed, the dates of completion should be indicated. This eliminates any doubt about what has been accomplished and what remains to be done. Some of the items listed may not be necessary in a particular estate.

View / store the list by selecting the link below.

[ Download Checklist — PDF ]


Robert W. Wilkinson, Attorney-at-Law
281 Broadway Avenue, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831
Call Today! (865) 482-4928

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