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Estate and Probate Law Glossary

Trying to decipher an acronym? Attempting to understand legal jargon? The Estate and Probate Law glossary gives you access to definitions for the Estate and Probate legal terminology commonly used in documents and court proceedings. This Estate and Probate Law glossary will help you understand the legal terms and phrases which are relevant to wills, estate planning, and other areas of Estate and Probate law.

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Estate and Probate Law Glossary

  • Absolute Estate
    see estate
  • Death Benefit
    : money payable to the beneficiary of a deceased as a benefit (as under a policy of life or accident insurance or a pension plan) NOTE: The right to death benefits is generally terminated in cases of ...
  • Death Certificate
    : a document setting forth information (as age, occupation, and place of birth) relating to a dead person and including a doctor's certification of the cause of death NOTE: Death certificates are ...
  • Devise
    de·vised de·vis·ing [Anglo-French deviser to divide, share, bequeath, ultimately from Latin dividere to divide] : to give (property) by will ;specif : to give (real property) by will ...
  • Estate
    [Anglo-French estat, literally, state, condition, from Old French, from Latin status, from stare to stand] 1 : the interest of a particular degree, nature, quality, or extent that one has in land or ...
  • Estate Planning
    : the arranging for the disposition and management of one's estate at death through the use of wills, trusts, insurance policies, and other devices
  • Estate Taxes
    The tax imposed on the property of a deceased person who transfers ownership by will or intestate succession.
  • Heir
    : one who inherits or is entitled to succeed to the possession of property after the death of its owner: as a : one who by operation of law inherits the property and esp. the real property of a ...
  • In Re
    [Latin] : in the matter of used in the title or name of a case where the proceeding is in rem or quasi in rem and not in personam (as in a matter involving a probate or bankruptcy estate, a ...
  • Intangible
    : incapable of being touched : having no physical existence : not tangible or corporeal
  • Life Estate
    see estate
  • Nonprobate
    : not involving or involved in a probate proceeding [a asset]
  • Orphans' Court
    : a probate court with limited jurisdiction
  • Probate
    [Latin probatum, neuter of probatus, past participle of probare to test, approve, prove] 1 a : the process of proving in a court of competent jurisdiction (as a probate court) that an instrument is ...
  • Probate Court
    : a court that has jurisdiction over the probate of wills and administration of estates and sometimes over the affairs of minors and persons adjudged incompetent compare orphans' court
  • Probate Estate
    see estate
  • Take
    took tak·en tak·ing vt 1 a : to obtain control, custody, or possession of often by assertive or intentional means b : to seize or interfere with the use of (property) by governmental ...
  • Taxable Estate
    see estate
  • Testacy
    pl: -cies : the state of being testate esp. as determined in probate of a will [a rule favoring over intestacy in the interpretation of wills] [partial ]
  • Testate
    [Latin testatus, past participle of testari to make a will] 1 : having made a valid will [died ] 2 : disposed of or governed by a will [ property] [a estate]
  • Will Contest
    : a dispute or proceeding (as a trial) begun by one who objects to probate of a will on the ground that it is invalid see also no contest clause NOTE: The party who contests the will has the burden ...