Archives for the ‘Title Transfer’ Category

Successor Trustee Tip Sheet on How to Administer and Distribute Trust Assets

Legal services at for successor trustees is provided by Mark W. Bidwell to meet their legal obligations. These obligations are; file tax returns, notify beneficiaries, notify the county, pay bills and debts, account and distribute assets of the trust. Successor Trustees need a bank account to make deposits and pay debts of the estate. […]

Avoid a Race with Death to the County Recorder’s Office at

Death bed transfers to sever joint tenancy in real property require strict compliance with California Civil Code Section 683.2(c).  Either before the death of the severing joint tenant, the quit claim deed to severe joint tenancy is recorded in the county where the real property is located; or the quit claim deed to severe joint […]

Post death funding of trust with a “Heggstad Petition” in probate court

In the Estate of Heggstad (1993) 16 Cal.App.4th 943, 20 Cal.Rptr.2d 433, the court determined a written declaration of trust by an owner of real property was sufficient to create a trust. The Heggstad court did not require a separate deed transferring the property to the trust.  So a trust may be funded after the […]

Post death funding of trust with “850 Petition” in probate court

An 850 petition is filed pursuant to California Probate Code Section 850 by the Trustee who has a claim to real or personal property, title to or possession of which is held by another. The “another” is usually a bank or banks with accounts in excess of $150,000. Otherwise a Section 13100 declaration would be […]

Passage of Property to Spouse

When a husband or wife dies leaving property that passes to the surviving spouse, whether by intestate succession [see Prob. Code, § 6401] or by devise, the property ordinarily passes to the survivor without the necessity for administration. [Prob. Code, § 13500] File Petition in Probate Court and pay filing fees DE221 Notify children and […]

Intestacy, No Surviving Spouse

Real and personal property passing when there is no surviving spouse but issue of decedent is living To the issue of the decedent, in equal shares as there are living members of the nearest generation of issue then living and deceased members of that generation who leave issue then living those children of the deceased […]

Small Estate Affidavit

For estates less than $150,000. Prepare a declaration by affidavit pursuant to California Probate Code Section 13100. The financial institution is obligated by California law to issue checks to the heirs and not the estate. This avoids probate

Sale of Real Estate in Probate

Homes, houses and real estate owned by a person who has died must go through probate. Probate is time consuming and time is the enemy. The house has to be sold before the bank forecloses or cash runs out. Key to speed is to retain an attorney to fast track the probate process and not […]


The Superior Courts of California jurisdictions are administered by County. If the decedent’s true and permanent home was in Orange County, then Orange County is the proper county for proceedings. If the decedent resided outside of California but owned real estate in Orange County then Orange County is still the proper County for selling the […]

Alternatives to Probate

Overview An estate is all property owned by the person who has died (the “decedent”).  A decedent’s property includes life insurance proceeds on life insurance policies owned by the decedent. Administration of an estate is paying the debts of decedent, paying income taxes owed by the estate and decedent, paying estate taxes owed by the […]