Summary Administration

Summary Administration, or the "Small Estate" Administration in Florida-- Is it right for you?

What Is Summary Administration?

Summary administration is a faster and cheaper type of probate administration known in other states as “small estate” administration. An estate containing less than $75,000 in non-exempt assets OR one that belongs to a decedent that passed away more than two years ago is eligible for summary administration.

Summary Administration vs. Formal Administration

A summary administration is more simple than a formal administration and, generally, a less expensive method of administering a decedent’s assets. One of the most common uses of a Summary Administration is in conjunction with the filing of a Petition to Determine Homestead. Since a Florida resident’s homestead is not considered a probate asset, it is not included in the calculation of the size of the estate in determining whether a Summary Administration can be used. While a formal administration can take 6-12 months or more to complete, a summary administration of an estate without creditors can be completed in as little as a week.

However, a summary administration is not appropriate in all instances. A summary administration cannot be used if the value of the assets subject to administration is more than $75,000 and cannot be used if the appointment of a personal representative is needed to handle the legal or business matters on behalf of the estate.

If you have questions about whether a summary administration is appropriate to administer the estate of your loved one, please call our office at (800) 896-3619 to speak with one of our experienced probate attorneys.