Compliance Question of the Week

What are the required elements of a small estate affidavit?

A Washington State Small Estate Affidavit should contain the following: 

  1. The claiming successor’s name and address, and that the claiming successor is a “successor” as defined in RCW 11.62.005;
  2. A statement that the decedent was a resident of the state of Washington on the date of his or her death;
  3. A statement that the value of the decedent’s entire estate subject to probate, not including the surviving spouse’s or surviving domestic partner’s community property interest in any assets which are subject to probate in the decedent’s estate, wherever located, less liens and encumbrances, does not exceed one hundred thousand dollars;
  4. A statement that forty days have elapsed since the death of the decedent;
  5. A statement that no application or petition for the appointment of a personal representative is pending or has been granted in any jurisdiction;
  6. A statement that all debts of the decedent including funeral and burial expenses have been paid or provided for;
  7. A description of the personal property and the portion thereof claimed, together with a statement that such personal property is subject to probate;
  8. A statement that the claiming successor has given written notice, either by personal service or by mail, identifying his or her claim, and describing the property claimed, to all other successors of the decedent, and that at least ten days have elapsed since the service or mailing of such notice; and
  9. A statement that the claiming successor is either personally entitled to full payment or delivery of the property claimed or is entitled to full payment or delivery thereof on the behalf and with the written authority of all other successors who have an interest therein.

An Oregon State Small Estate Affidavit should contain the following:

  1. State the name, age, domicile, post-office address and Social Security number of the decedent;
  2. State the date and place of the decedent’s death. A certified copy of the death certificate shall be attached to the affidavit;
  3. Describe and state the fair market value of all property in the estate, including a legal description of any real property;
  4. State that no application or petition for the appointment of a personal representative has been granted in Oregon;
  5. State whether the decedent died testate or intestate, and if the decedent died testate, the will shall be attached to the affidavit;
  6. List the heirs of the decedent and the last address of each heir as known to the affiant, and state that a copy of the affidavit showing the date of filing and a copy of the will, if the decedent died testate, will be delivered to each heir or mailed to the heir at the last-known address;
  7. If the decedent died testate, list the devisees of the decedent and the last address of each devisee as known to the affiant and state that a copy of the will and a copy of the affidavit showing the date of filing will be delivered to each devisee or mailed to the devisee at the last-known address;
  8. State the interest in the property described in the affidavit to which each heir or devisee is entitled and the interest, if any, that will escheat;
  9. State that reasonable efforts have been made to ascertain creditors of the estate. List the expenses of and claims against the estate remaining unpaid or on account of which the affiant or any other person is entitled to reimbursement from the estate, including the known or estimated amounts thereof and the names and addresses of the creditors as known to the affiant, and state that a copy of the affidavit showing the date of filing will be delivered to each creditor who has not been paid in full or mailed to the creditor at the last-known address;
  10. Separately list the name and address of each person known to the affiant to assert a claim against the estate that the affiant disputes and the known or estimated amount thereof and state that a copy of the affidavit showing the date of filing will be delivered to each such person or mailed to the person at the last-known address;
  11. State that a copy of the affidavit showing the date of filing will be mailed or delivered to the Department of Human Services and the Oregon Health Authority;
  12. State that claims against the estate not listed in the affidavit or in amounts larger than those listed in the affidavit may be barred unless:
    1. A claim is presented to the affiant within four months of the filing of the affidavit at the address stated in the affidavit for presentment of claims; or
    2. A personal representative of the estate is appointed within the time allowed under ORS 114.555 (Effect of failure to appoint personal representative); and
  13. If the affidavit lists one or more claims that the affiant disputes, state that any such claim may be barred unless:
    1. A petition for summary determination is filed within four months of the filing of the affidavit; or
    2. A personal representative of the estate is appointed within the time allowed under ORS 114.555 (Effect of failure to appoint personal representative).

Related Links:

RCW 11.62.010
ORS 114.525

Interested in learning more?

Questions? Contact the Compliance Hotline: 1.800.546.4465, compliance@nwcua.org.

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