Minnesota Probate Form PRO1201

Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will

Everything you need to know about Minnesota Form PRO1201, including helpful tips, fast facts & deadlines, how to fill it out, where to submit it and other related MN probate forms.

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About Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will

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.

Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will is a commonly used form within Minnesota. 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:

View Form PRO1201

MN Form PRO1201, which may also referred to as Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will, is a probate form in Minnesota. It is used by executors, personal representatives, trustees, guardians & other related parties during the probate & estate settlement process.

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Atticus Fast Facts About Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will

Sometimes it’s tough to find a quick summary— here’s the important details you should know about Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will:

  • This form pertains to the State of Minnesota

  • The official Minnesota 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 ’s Form PRO1201 - Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will up to date, certain details can change from time-to-time with little or no communication.

How to file Form PRO1201

Step 1 - Download the correct Minnesota 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 Minnesota 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 PRO1201, take a break, and then review. Probate and estate settlement processes in MN 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 PRO1201 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 PRO1201 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 Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will 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 Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will 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 Minnesota.

5 reasons you should submit PRO1201 as quickly as possible:

  1. The sooner you begin, the faster Minnesota 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 Minnesota. 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 Minnesota 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 Minnesota 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 Minnesota probate clerk or court for exact answers regarding Form PRO1201, and when in doubt— consult a qualified trust & estates lawyer for that area.

How to Download, Open, and Edit Form PRO1201 Online

Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will is one of the many probate court forms available for download through Atticus.

It may also be available through some Minnesota 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 Minnesota.

While Atticus automatically provides the latest forms, be sure to choose the correct version of Form PRO1201 - Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will 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 Minnesota probate court office.

Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will 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 Minnesota-provided government platform. Once you’ve opened the form, you should be able to directly edit the form before saving or printing.

View Form PRO1201

MN Form PRO1201, which may also referred to as Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will, is a probate form in Minnesota. It is used by executors, personal representatives, trustees, guardians & other related parties during the probate & estate settlement process.

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Did you know?

  • Form PRO1201 - Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will is a probate form in Minnesota.

  • Minnesota 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 Minnesota.

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

Frequently Asked Questions about Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will

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 PRO1201

Here’s the text, verbatim, that is found on Minnesota Form PRO1201 - Instructions - Starting A Case: Formal Probate With A Will. You can use this to get an idea of the context of the form and what type of information is needed.

Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 1 of 25 Helpful materials may be found at your public county law library. For a directory, see http://mn.gov/law- library/research-links/county-law-libr ar ies . js p . For more information, contact your court administrator or call the Minnesota State Law Library at 651-297-7651. General Information About Formal Probate INSTRUCTIONS Starting a Case: Formal Probate with a Will Important Notices and Resources The Court has forms and instructions, for some types of cases, as a general guide to the court process. These instructions explain the steps in more detail and answer common questions, but are not a full guide to the law. Court employees may be able to give general information on court rules and procedures, but they cannot give legal advice. Have a question about court forms or instructions? • Vis it www.MNCourts.gov/SelfHelp • Call the MN Cour ts S elf-Help Center at (651) 435-6535 Not sure what to do about a legal issue or need advice? • Talk w ith a law yer • Vis it http://mncourts.gov/Help-Topics/Find-a-Law yer.aspx Forms you May Need to Start your Formal Probate Case • Petition f or Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative (PRO1201); • Acceptance of Appointment as Personal Representative and Oath by Individual (PRO902); • Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority f or Appointment, and Bond (PRO901). You may get the forms online at www.mncourts.gov/forms . In the list of form categories, click on “Probate.” Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 2 of 25 V is it the P robate, Wills , a nd Es ta te s H e lp Topic (http://mncourts.gov/Help-Topics/P robate-Wills- and-Estates.aspx) for more detailed information about probate, the difference between informal and formal probate, and read some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the process. If you are not sure what type of probate you need to file, or if you need to file at all, you should talk with an attorney. The information in these Instructions is not meant to be legal advice, but is a general guide to explain the legal process and steps for f iling a P e tition for Formal P robate. If you do not understand any of these procedures, talk to an attorney. Court staff cannot give le gal advice . Do I ne e d to go through probate? Generally, filing a probate case with the court is not ne cessary if the person who died: • Did not own any real estate in their name alone, and • Owned personal property in their name alone with a total value less than $75,000. If you do not need to go through probate, you may be able to collect personal property (such as money in a bank account) or transfer title to motor vehicles owned by the person who died using an Affidavit for Collection of Personal Property. V is it http://www.mncourts.gov/GetForms.aspx?c=31&p=88 for more information about this process. De finitions you may find he lpful as you comple te the forms: • B e neficiary – A person or organization named in a legal document to receive money or other property when someone dies. Examples of legal documents include Will, trust, insurance policy, payable-on-death account, annuity, and retirement/pension account. • Codicil – A legal document that is used to make changes to an existing Will. Generally, codicils add to or supplement a Will rather than replace a Will. • Cre dito r – Any person or business that has a f ina nc ia l claim against (is owed money by) the estate. • Decedent – The person who has died. • De mandant – A person who demands that they receive notice in a probate proceeding by filing a document called a Demand for Notice with the court. • De s cendant or Issue – A blood or legally adopted relative directly descended from a person, including children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. • De visee – Any person designated (named) in a Will to receive real estate or personal property. Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 3 of 25 • He ir – A person who is entitled to the property of a person who died intestate. • Interested Person – A term that includes: o heirs of the decedent; o devisees of the decedent; o c hildr e n of the decedent; o spouse of the decedent; o creditors of the decedent; o demandants of the decedent; o beneficiaries; o anyone with priority for appointment as a personal representative; o anyone else having a property right in or claim against the decedent’s estate that may be affected by a probate proceeding, or the fiduciary representing someone who does, such as a guardian, conservator, or trustee; and o other individuals as determined by the court. • Inte s tate – When a person has not made a valid Will before dying, they are said to have “died intestate.” • Pe rs o nal Representative – Formerly known in MN as the “executor,” a person who is appointed by the court in a probate case to administer the estate of a person who has died. • Se parate writing gifting pe rs onal property – A document that lists what the testator wants to have happen to specific items of tangible personal property (other than cash, coin collections, or property used in a trade/business) that are not specifically addressed in the Will. • Supe rvis ed Administration – The court must approve the administration, final account, and distribution of all assets. • Te s tate – When a person has made a valid Will before dying, they are said to have “died testate.” • Uns upe rvised Adminis tration – After the appointment of the P ersonal Representative, the court will not supervise future administration unless one of the parties asks for supervised administration. • Will – A legal document describing how a person wants their property distributed after they have died. Information ne e ded to complete the Petition: • The birth date and location of the person who died, as well as the death date and location. • The permanent residence address of the person who died at the time of their death. Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 4 of 25 • The names and addresses of any spouse, children, heirs, and devisees of the person who died, as well as the names and addresses of any other interested parties. • An estimate of the value of any assets and debts of the person who died. • The original version or a photocopy of the Will ( if a va ila ble ), codicil(s), and any separate writing(s) left by the person who died. • The county and judicial district number where case will be filed. The Caption The top part of the first page is where you will find the case caption. It looks like this: A. List the county where you will be filing your Formal P robate case. Probate cases are typically filed in the county where the Decedent was living when they died, or if they were not a MN resident, in the MN county where they owned property. If you are not sure where you should file, please talk to an attorney. Court staff cannot tell you where to file your case. B. List the J udic ia l D is tr ic t. Each county belongs in one of ten judicial districts. If you do not know the Judicial District, you can find a map with all of the Judicial Districts at http://www.mncourts.gov/ F ind-Courts.aspx. Leave the line blank for Court File Number. C. Wr ite in the f ull le ga l name of the person who died (first, middle, and last). I nc lude a ll names the person may have been known by, especially if those names are listed on the Will, death certificate, or assets. The numbered paragraphs below correspond to the numbered paragraph in the Petition. Step 1 Fill out Petition for Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative (PRO1202) Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 5 of 25 Information about the Pe titione r 1. Write your name as the person petitioning for Formal P robate. Check all boxes that apply to describe your relationship to the person who died. Information about the De cedent P aragraphs 2-7 ask for information about the person who died. 2. Fill in the date and location (city and state) of the birth of the person who died. 3. Fill in the date and location (city and state) of the death of the person who died. 4. Under Minnesota law, there are limits on when you can file a petition for probate. See Minn. Stat. § 524.3-108 (https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/c ite/524. 3-108 ). You do not have to do anything for #4. 3 2 1 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 6 of 25 5. Fill in the street address, city, state, zip code, and county of the legal residence at the time of the person’s death. If you are not sure what would be considered the legal residence, you should speak with an attorney. 6. The first question in #6 is whether the person who died lived in Minnesota at the time of death. If the answer is Ye s, then you can skip to #7. If the answer is No (the Decedent did not live in Minnesota when they died), then you need to give the court more information about why you are filing for probate in this state. The next question is whether they owned property in Minnesota when they died. If Ye s, lis t w ha t county the property is in. If your answer to the first two questions in #6 is No, then you should talk to an attorney to see if Minnesota is the right state to file in. 7. Estimate the value of any assets the person who died had at the time of their death and write the amounts next to each type. Then, estimate the total amount of debt the person who died had at the time of their death. If you do not know the answers to these questions because you do not have access to the records of the person who died yet, list the assets and debts to the best of your knowledge. If there is no real property, then the value of the personal property in the estate should be over $75,000 for Formal Probate. If the value of the s e assets is less than $75,000 and the re 7 6 5 Amount of debt Amount of assets Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 7 of 25 is no re al prope rty, you will not ne e d to go through probate . V is it the P r oba te , Wills & Estates Help Topic for more information ( http://mncourts.gov/He lp-Topics/Probate-Wills- and-Estates.aspx). Information about the Will and the Pe rs onal Re pre sentative P aragraphs 8-18 ask for detailed information. 8. Fill in the dates for any documents the person who died had, checking all of the boxes that may apply. o A Will is a document describing what a person wants to happen to their property after they have died. o A codicil is a document that is used to make changes to an existing Will. Rather than replacing a Will with a whole new document, a codicil is an additional document used to explain or change an existing Will. o A separate writing gifting personal property is a document that lists what the testator wants to have happen to specific items of tangible personal property (other than cash, coin collections, or property used in a trade/business) that are not specifically addressed in the Will. Submit any and all of the originals of the s e docume nts that you may have . If you only have copie s and not the original docume nts , you can s ubmit the copie s along with a Statement of Contents of Lost, Destroyed, or Otherwise Unavailable Will (PRO1206). 8 9 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 8 of 25 9. Think back to the boxes you checked at #8. Now check the boxes that describe where the Will, codicil (if any), and separate writing (if any) can be found, checking all that may apply. 10. You do not need to give any information in #10, but the statement should be true. 11. You do not need to give any information in #11, but the statement should be true. 12. You do not need to give any information in #12, but the statement should be true. 13. Fill in the name of the person who was nominated by the Will to serve as personal representative of the estate. Then, check one of the boxes describing whether the nominated personal representative is willing and able to serve in this role. NOTE: There is a lot of important information you should know about personal representatives. Before you fill out #13, please read the rest of this section. If the person who was nominated is not willing or can’t serve, f ill in the name of a person who has priority, is w illing to s e r ve a s the personal representative, and is not dis qua lif ie d. o Minnesota law contains a list stating who can serve as the personal representative of an estate, in order of priority (see Minn. Stat. § 524.3-203, https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/c ite/524. 3-203 ). P ersons who are not disqualif ied to serve as a personal representative have priority in the following order: 1. The person named in a Will as the one that should serve as the personal representative. 2. The surviving spouse, if they are entitled to receive property according to the Will. 3. Other people who are entitled to receive property under the Will. 13 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 9 of 25 4. The surviving spouse, if they are not entitled to receive property according to the Will or there is not a Will. 5. Other heirs, if the r e is not a Will. 6. Any creditor, as long as 45 days has passed since the time of death. 7. A conservator that has not been discharged, as long as 90 days have passed since the time of death and no probate case has already been opened with the court. If you are not sure who should be listed as a personal representative or whether they are disqualified, you should talk with an attorney. o People named in numbers 2-5 in the list above may have the right to nominate someone else to serve in the ir pla c e, or they may waive their right to nominate someone to serve in their place. To waive this right, use the Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, Nomination of Personal Representative, and Bond (P RO901) form discussed in more detail later in these instructions. 14. Check a box to say whether the Will states that there should be no bond, the minimum bond, or a specific amount of bond (if this is the case, write in the amount). If the Will did not say anything about a bond, check “unspecified.” 15. Check a box to say whether the Will states that the estate should go through unsupervised a dminis tr a tio n, supervised a dminis tr a tio n, or administration was not specified (the Will did not specifically say what kind of probate process should be used). 16. Check a box to say whether you have received any demands for notice, and if you have, whether you have given proper notice to anyone who has filed a demand for notice. o A demand for notice is a document typic a lly filed by a creditor (any person or business that is owed money or property by the estate) asking that they be given notice when a probate case is opened, when documents are filed into the case, and when orders are issued. o Check with the court to see whether any demands for notice have been filed. If any demands for notice have been filed, you must serve a Notice of Intent to File 16 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 10 of 25 Document After Demand for Notice (P RO907) at least 14 days before f iling the P e tition with the court, and the demandants who submitted the forms must be listed as interested parties later in the P e tition. Information about De cedent’s family and/or inte re s ted pe rs ons: 17. Check all of the boxes that apply to describe the family situation of the person who died. There may be unfamiliar words or phrases (like “surviving issue”). Be sure to read the definitions below so that you can answer #17 accurately. o Decedent left no surviving spouse: Check this box if the person who died was never married, was married but their spouse died first, or was divorced and was not remarried at the time they died. o Decedent left no surviving issue: Check this box if the person who died did not have any living issue at the time they died. “Issue” means direct lineal descendants, such as children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc., whether by blood or by adoption. o A ll is s ue of Decedent are issue of Decedent’s surviving spouse: Check this box if the person who died never had children (by blood or adoption) with someone other than the spouse they were married to at the time they died, so that all children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. of the person who died are also related to the surviving spouse. o There are issue of Decedent that are not issue of the surviving spouse: Check this box if the person who died had children (by blood or adoption) with someone other than the spouse they were married to at the time they died, so that some of the children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. of the person who died are not related to the surviving spouse. o There are issue of the surviving spouse who are not issue of the Decedent: Check this box if the surviving spouse of the person who died ever had children (by blood or adoption) with someone other than the person who died, so that some of the children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. of the surviving spouse are not related to the person who died. 17 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 11 of 25 18. For this question, you will need to gather information about all of the inte re s ted partie s for the probate case. For e ach interested party, you will need the party’s: o Full na me o Mailing address o Relationship to the person who died o Legal interest in the probate case o Birth date (if the party is a minor) or date of death (if the party is deceased) List the spouse of the decedent first, if there is one. Repeat this for each interested party until a ll a r e lis te d. For the familial relationship and legal interest section, see pages 2 and 3 of these Instructions for definitions of devisee, heir, personal representative, and creditor. The “Other” section can be used to add relationships and interests that do not fit in the other boxes, including (but not limited to): o Attorney General – If the person who died included any charities as devisees, the attorney general is considered an interested person that must be listed. 18 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 12 of 25 o Demandant – If any creditors have submitted a Demand for Notice, they are considered interested persons that must be listed. o Fiduciary – If a person is a guardian, conservator, attorney-in-fact, trustee, or personal representative for one of the other interested persons, that fiduciary must be lis te d. o Foreign Consulate – If the person who died or any of the heirs or devisees was born in a foreign country, the Consulate of that country is considered an interested person that must be listed. o P arent of a minor interested person – If one of the interested persons is a minor, the parent of that person must be listed. If you are not sure whether to list a person or entity as an interested person, or you are not sure whether you have included all of the interested persons, it is a good idea to get some legal advice. 19. Check a box to say whether all of the people you listed as heirs in Question #18 lived at least 120 hours longer than the date the Decedent died. If any of the heirs died within the 120 hours after Decedent’s death, list that person’s name and their date of death. Ne gative Allegation State me nt 20 19 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 13 of 25 20. The answers you give to this question will create what is called a “ne gative alle gation s tate me nt,” which specifically tells the court that there are no other heirs or devisees other than the ones listed in your P e tition. Only check the boxes that apply to your situation. o (1) – Check this box to say that you have listed all of the devisees of the person who died. o (2) – Check this box to say that you have listed the spouse of the person who died, if they had a living spouse. o (3) – Check this box to say that you have listed all of the children of the person who died, including all adopted children, but not step-c hildren. o (4) Check this box to say that if the person who died had any children that died before them, you have listed all of that deceased child’s children (grandchildren of the person who died that had the deceased child as a parent). If you checked box (3) and/or box (4), you do not need to continue with the rest of this question. If you did not check either of those boxes, continue to box (5). o (5) – Check this box to say that you have listed the parents of the person who died if the person who died had no descendants (blood relatives directly descended from them, including children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.) o (5)(a) – If the person who died had no living parents, check this box to say that you have listed all of the siblings of the person who died instead. o (5)(b) – This box is used if you checked (5)(a) to say that you listed all of the siblings of the person who died because they had no living parents, but one or more of these siblings has died. Check this box to say that you have lis ted all of the descendants of any deceased siblings (these would be nieces, nephews, grandnieces, grandnephews, etc. of the Decedent). If you checked box (5), you do not need to continue with the rest of this question. If you did not check box (5), continue to box (6). Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 14 of 25 o (6) – Check this box to say that you have listed the grandparents (on both their mother’s side (maternal) and their father’s side (paternal)) of the person who died, if the person who died did not have any siblings. o (7) – Maternal Grandparents o (7)(a) – If neither of the Decedent’s maternal grandparents are living, check this box to say that you have listed the siblings of the Decedent’s mother (these would be aunts and uncles of the person who died). o (7)(b) – If any of the aunts or uncles listed in box (7)(a) have died, check this box to say that you have listed all of their children (these would be 1 st cousins of the Decedent). o (7)(c) – If none of the 1 st cousins listed in (7)(b) are living, check this box to say that you have listed any living children of these 1 st cousins. o (8) – Paternal Grandparents o (8)(a) – If neither of the Decedent’s paternal grandparents are living, check this box to say that you have listed the siblings of the Decedent’s mother (these would be aunts and uncles of the person who died). o (8)(b) – If any of the aunts or uncles listed in box (8)(a) have died, check this box to say that you have listed all of their children (these would be 1 st cousins of the Decedent). o (8)(c) – If none of the 1 st cous ins lis te d in ( 8)(b) are living, check this box to say that you have listed any living children of these 1 st cousins. Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 15 of 25 If you checked any of the boxes for (6)-(9), you should make sure that all of the people you named are also listed as interested persons in question 18. You should also attach a family tree to your P e tition. Requests for the Co urt The paragraph numbers in this section begin with #1. You do not need to fill out anything for #1-#7. 8. Fill in the name of the person you are asking to have appointed as the personal representative. 9. Fill in the name of the person you are asking to have appointed as the personal representative, along with the bond amount (if any). Check a box to say whether you would like a judge to supervise the administration of the estate or not.  Unsupervised administration does not require court approval of every action taken by the personal representative, who has the authority to distribute estate assets without a court order.  In a supervised administration, the court directly supervises the personal representative’s actions and a court order is needed to distribute probate assets.  You can request a certain amount of bond or to have either a supervised or unsupervised administration, but ultimately this decision will be up to the judge. If you are not sure whether to request a bond or how to choose between supervised and unsupervised administration of the estate, you should talk with an attorney. Step 2 Sign the Petition for Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative (PRO1202) 8 9 Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 16 of 25 Sign the Petition for Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative form. State your address, phone number, and e-mail address in the blanks under the signature line. When you sign the Petition, you are signing under penalty of perjury. This means you are saying that everything in the form is true and correct; if you know something in the form is not true when you sign it, you could be found guilty of the crime of perjury (see Minn. Stat. § 609.48, https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/? id=609.48 ). If you do not have an attorney, check the box for “Self-Represented.” If you are an attorney representing the petitioner, check the attorney box and include your attorney license number, firm name and address, etc. This form is only needed if the person who has priority to serve as the personal representative is not willing or is not able to do that job. If this fits your situation, the Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, and Bond form will be fille d out and s igne d by the pe rs on who is giving up the ir priority to be the personal representative. They can nominate someone else to serve in that role, but they do not have to. You can find this form online at http://mncourts.gov/ GetF orms.aspx?c=31&f=597 . The instructions in Step 3 are directed to the person who is giving up their priority to be the personal representative. The Caption Fill out the caption the same way as in the Petition in Step 1 above. De s cription of Priority Step 3 (Optional) Fill out the Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, and Bond (PRO901) Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 17 of 25 A. Fill in your name and address, then explain why you have priority under Minn. Stat. § 524.3- 203 (https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/524.3-203 ) to serve as the personal representative and the right to nominate another personal representative. See Step 1 above for more information about who has priority under the law. Nomination B. If you would like to nominate someone else to serve as the personal representative, check the first box and fill out the person’s full name and address. If you do not want to nominate a personal representative, check the second box. Re nunciation Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 18 of 25 C. Check the first box if you would like to renounce (give up) your priority to serve as the personal representative. By checking this box, you would only be giving up your priority as long as the person you nominated qualifies to serve as the personal representative and continues to act in that role. Check the second box if you would like to reserve your priority to serve as the personal representative. B ond D. A bond protects the beneficiaries of the estate against any wrongdoing by the personal representative (for example, poor management or stealing of funds). If you would like to request a bond, check the first box and fill out the amount of the bond you would like. Check the second box if you do not want a bond to be required. The Signature B lock E. The Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, and Bond form needs to be signed by the person who fills it out. They will be signing under penalty of perjury (see Minn. Stat. § 609.48, https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/? id=609. 48 ). They should: • Date and sign the form; • Include the county and state they are in when they sign the form; and • Print their name, address, phone number, and email address. The Caption Step 4 Fill out the Acceptance of Appointment as Personal Representative and Oath by Individual (PRO902) Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 19 of 25 Fill out the caption the same way as in the Petition in Step 1 above. The Acceptance A. Fill in your name. B. Fill in your f ull address. The Signature B lock You need to sign the Acceptance of Appointment as Personal Representative and Oath by Individual form (P RO902) under penalty of perjury (see Minn. Stat. § 609.48, https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/? id=609. 48 ). You should: • Date and sign the form; • Include the county and state you are in when you sign the form; and • P r int your name, address, phone number, and email address. This form is only needed if the original, signed Will of the person who passed away is not available. Step 5 (Optional) Fill out the Statement of Contents of Lost, Destroyed, or Otherwise Unavailable Will (PRO1206) Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 20 of 25 The Caption Fill out the caption the same way as in the Petition in Step 1 above. The State me nt Fill in your name as the P e titione r. 1. This paragraph requires 2 things: • The date the original Will was signed, and • Why the or igina l Will is not a va ila ble . o Check one of the boxes describing why the original Will is not available. If the original Will is not available for a reason other than being lost or destroyed, check the “other” box and explain what happened to the Will. 2. Check the first box if you are able to attach a copy of the Will to the Statement. OR Check the second box if you do not have a copy of the Will, but are able to describe what the Will s a id ins te a d. Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 21 of 25 The Signature B lock You need to sign the Statement of Contents of Lost, Destroyed, or otherwise Unavailable Will form (PRO1206) under penalty of perjury (see Minn. Stat. § 609.48, https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/? id=609. 48 ). You should: • Date and sign the form; • Include the county and state you are in when you sign the form; and • P r int your name, address, phone number, and email address. Fo r yo ur o wn re co rds, make a copy of the following forms: • Petition for Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative (PRO1202); • Acceptance of Appointment and Oath by Individual (P RO902); • Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, and Bond (P RO901) (if you completed this form); and • Statement of Contents of Lost, Destroyed, or Otherwise Unavailable Will (PRO1206) (if you completed this form). File the following with the court: • Petition for Formal Probate of Will and for Formal Appointment of Personal Representative (PRO1202); • Acceptance of Appointment and Oath by Individual (PRO901); • Nomination of Personal Representative and/or Renunciation of Priority for Appointment, and Bond (PRO902) (if you completed this form); • The or igina l Will, if a va ila ble—if not, then the Statement of Contents of Lost, Destroyed, or Otherwise Unavailable Will (PRO1206); and Step 7 File the Completed Forms with the Court Step 6 Make a Copy of Completed Forms Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 22 of 25 • The death certificate of the decedent and of any heirs or devisees that died before the decedent. There is a f iling f e e due when you file. You can make checks payable to “District Court Administrator.” If court administration finds that all of your documents are in order, they will schedule a hearing and issue you a copy of a Notice and Order for Hearing on Petition for Formal Probate of Will and Appointment of Personal Representative and Notice to Creditors. Make copies of the Notice form and serve one (mail or hand-de live r ) to each of the heirs, devisees, and all other interested parties you listed in the Petition. The Notice must be mailed no late r than 14 days before the scheduled court hearing. Complete a separate Affidavit of Service for Formal Probate (with a Will) (PRO1203) for each party you mailed or hand-delivered the Notice to and file the affidavits with the court. P ublish the Notice and Order for Hearing on Petition for Formal Probate of Will and Appointment of Personal Representative and Notice to Creditors once a week for 2 consecutive weeks in a legal newspaper in the county where the case was filed. The second week of publication must be at le as t 10 days before the hearing. You will be responsible for paying the costs of publication. File the Affidavit of Publication given to you by the newspaper with the court. Complete the Notice to Commissioner of Human Services Regarding Possible Claims and make a copy of the document to keep for your own records. Send the following documents to the Commissioner: • Notice to Commissioner of Human Services Regarding Possible Claims; and • Copy of the Notice and Order for Hearing on Petition for Formal Probate of Will and Appointment of Personal Representative and Notice to Creditors Step 8 Mail and Publish Notice of the Formal Probate for Interested Parties and Creditors Step 9 Fill out the Notice to Commissioner of Human Services Regarding Possible Claims (PRO905) and Mail a Copy to the Commissioner Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 23 of 25 The address for mailing this notice is: Commissioner of Human Services, Attn: Special Recovery Unit/Estate Notice, P.O. Box 64995, St. P aul, MN 55164-0095. You do not need to have someone else mail this notice to the Commissioner—you can be the one to mail it. After you have mailed the notice: 1. Complete an Affidavit of Service of Notice to the Commissioner of Human Services Regarding Possible Claims (P RO903), and 2. File the Affidavit of Service with the court. Do not file the Notice with the court (it is for the Commissioner of Human Services only). NOTE: If re al e s tate is involved, for certain real estate transactions, you may have to take additional steps with the county recorder’s office in the county where the real estate is located. Court staff cannot answer questions about real estate transactions. If you have any questions, talk to an attorney. You will only need to complete this step if the person who died had a surviving spouse and/or any surviving children. Complete the Notice to Spouse and/or Children. Make one copy to keep for your own records, and one copy for any surviving spouse and/or each of the surviving children of the person who died, if any. You do not need to have someone else mail these notices—you can be the one to mail them. After you have mailed these notices, if any: 1. Complete an Affidavit of Service by Mail for each person you sent the notice to, and then 2. File each Affidavit of Service by Mail with the court. Do not file the Notices with the court (they are for the surviving spouse and/or children only). Step 10 (If Applicable) Fill out the Notice to Spouse and/or Children (PRO906) and Mail Copies to Any Surviving Spouse and/or Children You need to fi l e the Affidavit of Service to the Commissioner of Human Services Regarding Possible Claims wi th the court, but NOT the Notice form. You need to fi l e the Affidavits of Service wi th the court, but NOT the Notice forms . Step 11 Attend the Court Hearing Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 24 of 25 It is generally the best practice to file your Affidavits of Mailing and the Affidavit of Publication before the scheduled hearing. You must appear at the scheduled hearing and: • be ready to talk about the information included in your petition; and • bring a copy of each of the forms you filed as part of Step 7 (above). If the judge ordered a bond, the Letters will not be issued until the required bond is filed. If a bond is required, you will need to contact a bond company to have one issued. The court cannot recommend a specific bond company. You will receive an Order for Formal Probate of Will and Appointment of Personal Representative and Letters Testamentary after you have filed documents discussed at the hearing, if any. After the Letters Testamentary (the document that gives the personal representative the authority to handle the administration of the estate) have been issued by the judge, you can get certified copies from court administration. There will be a charge for each certified copy (see http://mncourts.gov/He lp-T opics/Court-Fees/District-C ourt- Fees.aspx?cat=probate&cookieCheck=true). Certified copies of the Letters Testamentary may be needed for certain tasks, including but not limite d to: • presentation to banks and other financial institutions to close the accounts of the person who died or to open an estate bank account, if necessary; • transferring title to estate real estate; • presentation to the Department of Motor Vehicles to transfer title to a vehicle. Step 12 Get Certified Copies of the Letters Testamentary Step 11 After the Hearing Instructions – Starting a Formal Prob ate Case with a Will PRO1201 State ENG 8/20 w ww .mncourts.gov/f or ms Page 25 of 25 After you have been appointed as the personal representative by the Letters Testamentary, you will need to administer the estate of the person who died. Administering the estate includes, but is not limite d to: • Collection, inventory, and appraisal of assets. • P aying the taxes and debts of the person who died. • Distributing remaining assets to the proper parties as specified by la w . • P reparing an Inventory (PRO912) and Final Account (PRO913) and closing the estate. The estate cannot be closed until it has been at least 4 months from the date the Notice to Creditors was published. If you have questions about how to administer and close the estate, it is a good idea to talk to an attorney. Step 13 Administer and Close the Estate

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