What is Small Estates?
Small Estates is also known as Disposition of Personal Property without Administration. These cases are filed when a Formal Administration is not necessary and no real property is involved.
The deceased must have been a resident of Miami-Dade County at the time of death. The deceased assets must be $6,000 or less and cannot exceed funeral bill. Other restrictions may apply depending on the circumstances.
If the assets are over $6,000 you cannot proceed with a small estates action and it is suggested that you consult with an attorney.
Filing a Small Estates Petition
A Small Estates Petition can be filed in person at Probate Court Office or by mail. If filing by mail, please provide a self-addressed stamp envelope. A deputy clerk will mail the necessary forms and instructions.
At the time of filing, you must bring with you or mail in a certified copy of the death certificate, a copy of the itemized funeral contract, the paid in-full receipt and a copy of any documentation of the decedent's assets along with the applicable filing fees.
Assets are only released to the party who paid the funeral bill.
If there is more than one bank account, there is an additional fee of $3.00 per account.
A caveat is a legal notice to a court or public officer to suspend a certain proceeding until the notifier is given a hearing. A caveat filed by an heir, interested party or creditor will be accepted before a case is filed. Visit the fee schedule for a complete list of our fees.
Once an estate is opened, we will notify the caveator in writing of the case number, date letters were issued, names of personal representative and attorney on the case. We do not supply caveat forms. Once a case is opened, we do supply the claim form. There is no filing fee.