Q: Am I legally required probate husband's will if he left entire estate to me ?
I am selling commercial property with both our names on deeds. We were in the process of doing this together before his passing but never started any listing etc. I just want to sell as is, no contingency, cash only. Must I probate the will or can I just proceed as we were planning?
If both you and your husband's name are on the deeds for these properties, then your ownership probably was "tenancy by the entireties" - a form of ownership for married couples under which when one spouse dies, the suriving spouse becomes the sole owner by survivorship. The exception would be if the deed contained language saying that you and your husband had a different type of ownership such as a "tenancy in common."
Assuming that the deed does not have such wording stating a different form of ownership so that it is tenancy by the entireties, you do not need to probate your husband's will to sell these properties.
To know for certain what form of ownership you have, I suggest you have the deeds reviewed by an attorney with experience in this area.
A: You will need to review the actual language of the Deed to determine how the property is titled. If the Deed lists your name and your husband's name as "husband and wife" or as "tenants by entireties" or as "joint tenants with right of survivorship" then the title passed to you automatically upon your husband's death and you do not have to probate his Will or open an Estate. If the Deed only lists your names but does not identify you as husband and wife or otherwise use the above language then it could be interpreted as Tenants in Common, and you would have to probate the Will and open an Estate to confirm that you have authority to sell the property.
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