• Take the official Will (along with a certified death certificate) to the local court in the county where the deceased was living at the time of death and filing a probate petition. The court will establish the validity of the will and will verify you as the authority to act on behalf of the deceased (according to the will). The court will open a file and issue a letter testamentary (letters of administration). Be sure to get multiple certified copies of the letter testamentary so you can deal with banks and others where it will be legally required. If the deceased had no will, certain individuals (next of kin) can take the death certificate to the probate court and be appointed the administrator (or administratrix) of the estate. Alternatively, you can go to an attorney, who will handle the details for you and his fee will be discharged from the estate.

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