Using a small estate affidavit in Colorado
If the total probate assets are less than $60,000 then
you can collect the assets without any legal process with a small estate
affidavit. This affidavit allows you to take possession of the
assets, but other heirs and creditors still have rights to these assets.
There is no court process
and few formalities for using a small estate affidavit. You must be an heir to collect
the assets of the estate. If you are concerned about liability to
creditors or other heirs, informal probate is your best protection. If
another heir or a creditor opens an estate you must turn the proceeds over to
the personal representative.
If you pay the money to yourself and other heirs of the estate and a creditor doesn't get paid, they can make a claim against the estate
and any heir that received money from the estate. As the administrator of
the small estate you may be responsible for money that you paid to another heir if
a creditor makes a claim against the estate. Creditors of claims arising
prior to death generally have 1
year from the date of death to attempt to collect their money.
Creditors of claims arising after death (such as funeral expenses) have 4 months
after the claims arise.
If an heir doesn't get their share, they can make a claim against you. Absent
informal probate, the rights of heirs to come after you for their share of the
estate is somewhat open ended. By using informal probate, you can limit
your liability to other heirs.
One last warning, fraud can be pursued for 5 years after the discovery of the fraud.
Free Small Estate Affidavit
If you would like to talk to a Colorado attorney with 25 years experience,
send an email or call 970-249-9595.
Michael F. Deneen, Attorney