Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer To open a probate proceeding in Florida you must hire an attorney. The attorney will advise you about the type of administration necessary, but it's likely formal administration.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer For all property owned by the wife at her death, including what was jointly owned property with the husband prior to his death, or passed to her under the husband's Will, the wife's Will will control.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer Since she was a Florida resident, and a promissory note is intangible personal property, her estate should be opened in Florida. If she sold land subject to an installment sale, she does not own the land - she would just have a note and mortgage.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer If you sell the house for more than it was worth when you inherited it, you will pay capital gains tax on the difference, less any costs of sale. Depreciation must also be recaptured - its is taxed at 25%.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer I'm sorry for you loss. Most likely, as Florida requires that personal representatives hire an attorney. The only reason you would not need one is if all assets go directly to beneficiaries, such as through beneficiary designation for life insurance and retirement accounts.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer You do not owe any excise tax, but you are required to file a federal gift tax return reporting the value of the home as a gift. Assuming you have not used your $5.49 million gift and estate tax exemption, no tax will be due.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer The Clerk of Court generally requires that an estate be closed in one year from the personal representative's qualification date, but extensions can be obtained for good cause.
Gregory Herman-Giddens' answer Yes. If you get sued, the home is not protected as it would be if it's in both names. Also, if you want her to receive it at your death, it would not automatically go to her.
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