California Probate Form DE-226

Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates)

Everything you need to know about California Form DE-226, including helpful tips, fast facts & deadlines, how to fill it out, where to submit it and other related CA probate forms.

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About Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates)

There are all sorts of forms executors, beneficiaries, and probate court clerks have to fill out and correspond with during probate and estate settlement, including affidavits, letters, petitions, summons, orders, and notices.

Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) is a commonly used form within California. Here’s an overview of what the form is and means, including a breakdown of the situations when (or why) you may need to use it:

States the courts decision (order) about whether all or part of a deceased person’s estate does not have to go through the probate process because it belongs to the deceased person’s spouse or domestic partner.

Atticus Fast Facts About Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates)

Sometimes it’s tough to find a quick summary— here’s the important details you should know about Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates):

  • This form pertains to the State of California

  • The official California source for this form is here.

Government forms are not typically updated often, though when they are, it often happens rather quietly. While Atticus works hard to keep this information about California’s Form DE-226 - Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) up to date, certain details can change from time-to-time with little or no communication.

How to file Form DE-226

Step 1 - Download the correct California form based on the name and ID if applicable

Double check that you have both the correct form name and the correct form ID. Some California probate forms can look remarkably similar, so it’s best to double, even triple-check that you’re using the right one! Keep in mind that not all States have a standardized Form ID system for their probate forms.

Step 2 - Complete the Document

Fill out all relevant fields in Form DE-226, take a break, and then review. Probate and estate settlement processes in CA are long enough to begin with, and making a silly error can push your timeline even farther back. No thank you!

Note: If you don’t currently know all of the answers and are accessing Form DE-226 online, be sure to avoid closing the browser tab and potentially losing all your progress (or use a platform like Atticus to help avoid making mistakes).

Step 3 - Have Form DE-226 witnessed or notarized (if required)

Some States and situations require particular forms to be notarized. If you have been instructed to get the document notarized or see it in writing on the document, then make sure to hire a local notary. There are max notary fees in the United States that are defined and set by local law. Take a look at our full guide to notary fees to make sure you aren’t overpaying or getting ripped off.

Step 4 - Submit Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) to the relevant office

This is most often the local probate court where the decedent (person who passed away) is domiciled (permanently resides) or the institution involved with this particular form (e.g. a bank). Some offices allow you to submit forms online, other’s don’t, and we while we generally recommend going in-person to expedite the process, sometimes that simply isn’t an option.

It’s also a generally good idea to establish a positive working relationship with any probate clerk (unfortunately there’s enough people & process out there making things more difficult and unnecessarily confusing for them), so a best practice is to simply ask the probate clerk proactively exactly how and where they’d prefer you to submit all forms.

Need help getting in touch with a local probate court or identifying a domicile probate jurisdiction?

👉 Find and Contact your Local Probate Court

👉 What is a Domicile Jurisdiction?

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When Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) is due

Different probate forms or processes can require different deadlines or response times for completing the appropriate form.

While some steps in the process are bound to specific deadlines (like petitioning for probate, having to submit an inventory of assets, or filing applicable notices to creditors and beneficiaries), many probate forms or processes are not tied to a specific deadline since the scope of work can vary based on situational factors or requirements involved.

Either way, there are a bunch of practical reasons why personal representatives should work to complete each step as thoroughly and quickly as possible when completing probate in California.

5 reasons you should submit DE-226 as quickly as possible:

  1. The sooner you begin, the faster California can allow heirs and beneficiaries to get their share of assets subject to probate. Acting promptly can also decrease the costs & overall mental fatigue through an otherwise burdensome process.

    Helpful Context: What’s the Difference Between Probate and Non-Probate Assets?

  2. In general, creditors of an estate usually have around 3-6 months from the time you file notice to creditors to file any claims for debt against the deceased’s assets. If they don’t, then that debt is forfeited (and more importantly, the executor won’t be held personally responsible). So doing this sooner means you have a better idea of who is owed what and ensures you won’t get a surprise collector months later.

  3. Not filing a will within 30 days (on average) could mean that the probate process proceeds according to intestate laws (laws that govern what happens to someone's stuff without a will) or is subject to unnecessary supervision by the probate court. And if you aren't directly related to the deceased (a.k.a. next of kin), this could also mean you lose your inheritance.

  4. It’s important to file any necessary state tax returns on behalf of the deceased or estate by the following tax season in California. If you don’t, you could owe penalties and interest. This also includes any necessary federal tax returns such as Forms 1040, 1041, or even a Form 706 estate tax return.

  5. If a house in the State of California is left empty (or abandoned) for a while, insurance can get dicey. For example, if the house burns down and no one has been there for a year, an insurance company may get out of paying your claim.

If you’re not using Atticus to get specific forms, deadlines, and timelines for California probate, then try and stay as organized as possible, pay close attention to the dates mentioned in any correspondence you have with the State’s government officials, call the local California probate clerk or court for exact answers regarding Form DE-226, and when in doubt— consult a qualified trust & estates lawyer for that area.

How to Download, Open, and Edit Form DE-226 Online

Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) is one of the many probate court forms available for download through Atticus.

It may also be available through some California probate court sites, such as . In order to access the latest version, be updated with any revisions, and get full instructions on how to complete each form, check out the Atticus Probate & Estate Settlement software or consider hiring a qualified legal expert locally within California.

While Atticus automatically provides the latest forms, be sure to choose the correct version of Form DE-226 - Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) f using any other site or resource in order to avoid having to re-complete the form process and/or make another trip to the California probate court office.

Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) is a .pdf, so opening it should be as simple as clicking “View Form” from within the Atticus app or by clicking the appropriate link found on any California-provided government platform. Once you’ve opened the form, you should be able to directly edit the form before saving or printing.

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Did you know?

  • Form DE-226 - Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates) is a probate form in California.

  • States the courts decision (order) about whether all or part of a deceased person’s estate does not have to go through the probate process because it belongs to the deceased person’s spouse or domestic partner.

  • California has multiple types of probate and the necessary forms depend on the unique aspects of each estate, such as type and value of assets, whether there was a valid will, who is serving as the personal representative or executor, and even whether or not they also live in California.

  • During probate, all personal representatives and executives in are required to submit a detailed inventory of assets that must separate non-probate assets from probate assets.

  • Probate in California, especially without guidance, can take years to finish and cost upwards of $14,000.

Frequently Asked Questions about Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates)

States the courts decision (order) about whether all or part of a deceased person’s estate does not have to go through the probate process because it belongs to the deceased person’s spouse or domestic partner.

Probate is the government’s way of making sure that when a person dies, the right stuff goes to the right people (including the taxes the government wants).

All of that stuff is collectively known as someone’s “estate”, and it’s the job of the executor or personal representative to fill out all the forms and complete all the required steps to formally dissolve the estate. 

To get instant clarity on the entire probate process and get an idea of the steps, timeline, and best practices, read the Atticus Beginner’s Guide to Probate

The best place? Create an account in Atticus to start getting estate-specific advice. 

You may need a lawyer, you may not, and paying for one when you didn’t need it really hurts. Atticus makes sure you make  the best decisions (plus you can write it off as an executor expense).

We’ve also created a list of other probate services. Be sure to check it out!

An executor is named in someone’s will, and if the deceased didn’t have a will, then the spouse or other close family relative usually steps up to fulfill the role. If no one wants to do it, then a judge will appoint someone. 

The executor is responsible for the complete management of the probate process, including major responsibilities such as:

  • Creating an inventory of all probate assets.

  • Filling out all necessary forms

  • Paying off all estate debts and taxes

  • Submitting reports to the court and beneficiaries as requested

And much more. This process often stretches longer than a year. 

For an idea of what separates executors who succeed from those who make this way harder than it should be, visit our article, Executors of an Estate:
What they do & secrets to succeeding
.

The Exact Text on Form DE-226

Here’s the text, verbatim, that is found on California Form DE-226 - Spousal Or Domestic Partner Property Order (Probate—decedents Estates). You can use this to get an idea of the context of the form and what type of information is needed.

THE COURT FINDS Decedent's THE COURT FURTHER FINDS AND ORDERS 5. b. 6. an unincorporated trade or business, a list of all its known creditors and the amount owed each is on file. a. b. 7. b. 8. 9. Date: JUDICIAL OFFICER Family Code, § 297.5; Probate Code, § 13656 www.courts.ca.gov Form Adopted for Mandatory Use Judicial Council of California DE-226 [Rev. January 1, 2015] SPOUSAL OR DOMESTIC PARTNER PROPERTY ORDER (Probate—Decedents Estates) a. a. All notices required by law have been given. , 1. 2. 3. 4. a. b. c. 10. Page 1 of 1 Date of hearing: Time: Dept.:Room: Decedent died on (date): a resident of the California county named above. a nonresident of California and left an estate in the county named above. intestate. testate. surviving spouse surviving registered domestic partner is (name): The property described in Attachment 5a is property passing to the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner named in item 4, and no administration of it is necessary. See Attachment 5b for further order(s) respecting transfer of the property to the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner named in item 4. To protect the interests of the creditors of (business name): Within days from this date, the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner named in item 4 shall file an undertaking in the amount of (specify): $ See Attachment 6b for further order(s) protecting the interests of creditors of the business. The property described in Attachment 7a is property that belonged to the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner under Family Code section 297.5 and Probate Code sections 100 and 101, and the surviving spouse's or surviving domestic partner's ownership upon decedent's death is confirmed. See Attachment 7b for further order(s) respecting transfer of the property to the surviving spouse or surviving domestic partner. All property described in the Spousal or Domestic Partner Property Petition that is not determined to be property passing to the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner under Probate Code section 13500, or confirmed as belonging to the surviving spouse or surviving registered domestic partner under Probate Code sections 100 and 101, shall be subject to administration in the estate of decedent. All of such property is described in Attachment 8. Other (specify): Continued in Attachment 9. Number of pages attached: SIGNATURE FOLLOWS LAST ATTACHMENT ATTORNEY OR PARTY WITHOUT ATTORNEY (name, address, and State Bar number): TEL NO.: After recording, return to: E-MAIL ADDRESS (optional): FAX NO. (optional): ATTORNEY FOR (name): STREET ADDRESS: MAILING ADDRESS: CITY AND ZIP CODE: BRANCH NAME: SUPERIOR COURT OF CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OF FOR RECORDER'S USE ONLY DECEDENT ESTATE OF (Name): CASE NUMBER: PROPERTY ORDER SPOUSALDOMESTIC PARTNER DE-226 FOR COURT USE ONLY Print this formSave this formClear this form For your protection and privacy, please press the Clear This Form button after you have printed the form.

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