Down to the Basics – Fiduciary Broker Vlog #8


Fiduciary Broker Vlog Episode 8 | Down to the Basics

What exactly is Probate and what exactly is an Executor or an Administrator of a Probate? What are the obligations of person responsible to discharge a probate?

Hi, I’m Dan Collins – a Sacramento, California licensed real estate broker with expertise in real property matters involving Probates and Trusts. I am also a California licensed general contractor and I act as court appointed receiver administrator for the Superior Court.  If you have found yourself tasked with being an Executor administering a Probate or a Trustee in an estate, I can help you effectively execute your duties that attorneys do not help you with. To learn more, please visit my website:

Today I want to get down to the basics and answer some of the most common, but not necessarily simple, questions that I get asked about. What is probate?  What does an Executor or an Administrator of Probate do?

Probate starts at the end – namely the end of someone’s life.  The first order of business is when a family reads the will, and the named Executor in the will needs to file Probate with the local court.

If a person dies without a will the court will appoint an Administrator for the estate. Depending on the jurisdiction the court may be involved, and an attorney may be required for each step of the process.

Administering Probates comes with real liabilities and it is both reasonable and recommended that the person who is tasked with administering the estate to hire probe qualified legal counsel that can be paid from the estate.

The Executor, or Administrator, is responsible to produce specific documents. These required documents include a death certificate, list of assets, list of liabilities and a list of heirs.  All of these must be produced and submitted to the court.

A detailed list of Liabilities, Administration costs, and taxes must also be collected before distribution by the executor who administers the probate. The court will provide instructions to the Executor to help guide them through how and when to distribute assets to the heirs.

Most family members will likely deal with a probate situation at least once in their lives. To put some perspective on probates, let me share a few facts with you:

  1. Less than 5% of Americans avoid probate using a revocable trust or other method, so that leaves 95% of estates to be probated. 2,467,143 estates were subject to probate in 2013, which is the most recent numbers available.
  2. The average US inheritance is $176,814.
  3. That’s $436 Billion worth of estates Probated in 2013 alone!
  4. 78.8% of people 65 and older own real estate.
  5. That’s 1,973,714 properties that transfer through probate annually.
  6. 67% of real estate in Probate is owned free and clear.
  7. That’s roughly 1.3 million properties with no debt.

It is vitally important to deal with competent people to assist you in administering probate if you are called upon to serve as a probate executor or an administrator.  In some of my next videos, I’ll share with you some of the common pitfalls that executors and administrators encounter – and especially how to avoid them!

My name is Dan Collins, I act as a “fiduciary broker” in probates and trusts that involve real property assets.  To learn more, please visit my website:

Thank you for joining me today.

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