When it comes to estates, they vary greatly in size. You may have an estate with a value over a million dollars while someone else’s estate may have a value under $50,000. The law accommodates for these differences in estate values by offering some more lenient requirements and processes for small estates. Small estates are easier to manage and get through probate, if probate is even needed, so the rules for them reflect that. So, how do you know if you have a small estate?

The Tennessee Bar Association explains a small estate has a value under $50,000. You should not have any real property either. There is no appointment of a personal representative. A notice to creditors is published. Your probate process will not begin until 45 days after you have died. It begins with an affidavit.

A small estate will have less cost associated with it because most of its details are handled easily. For example, there is no need to transfer titles because any titles automatically transfer by law or through something you have set up. Your estate will not spend a lot of time in court. It usually just requires a quick look through by court to close the case.

You probably will not have a lot of heirs trying to get a piece of the estate because there is not much to go around or you have already set up transfers of your assets. It is just an easier option than larger estates or other probate options. This information is for education and is not legal advice.