Summary Administration in Florida probate can be done if the person has been deceased for over two years or if the assets are less than $75,000. 

Compared to Formal Administration, Summary Administration is a much shorter process. The reason for this is that a Personal Representative is not appointed and all the formal processes designed to pay creditors of the estate do not normally apply. 

Florida has a two-year statute of limitations for creditors to bring a claim against a deceased person. After two years, all creditor claims are barred and the probate assets can be distributed to the beneficiaries without having to go through the formal notice of creditor requirement.

If the person has been dead for less than two years and the assets are less than $75,000, the petitioner in the Summary Administration can either file a Notice to Creditors to bar any future creditors from bringing claims or can file an Affidavit where they remain personally liable for any claims brought before the two year mark.

If you know that the estate has creditors, then Summary Administration is not the right probate administration, but formal administration will be needed. 

When is Florida Probate Necessary?

Florida probate is necessary when you pass away owning assets in your name individually and without a beneficiary designation. 

Examples of assets that usually pass through probate include real estate titled under your name directly, bank accounts without a beneficiary or bank accounts with a beneficiary that already passed away, businesses you own directly, etc.

Contrary to popular belief, a Florida Will does not avoid Florida probate court. On the contrary, a Florida Will is not effective until admitted in Probate Court and a Probate judge signs an order stating that it is your valid last will and testament.

Cost of Probate in Florida for Summary Administration

The cost of the summary administration will vary depending on the assets under the Florida formal administration. In Miami-Dade County Probate Court, the cost of opening the summary administration is $351. 

Other cost include mailing of documents and notices to the beneficiaries, assuming that they do not sign waivers and consents of the administration and the petitions being filed.

All in all you are probably looking to spend anywhere from $351 to $500 dollars in a summary administration that is uncontested and no major issues arise.

The next major cost in the summary administration includes attorney’s fees and cost, which I will cover next. 

Cost of Miami Probate Attorney Fee for Summary Administration

There are two basic models for a Miami probate attorney to charge his or her attorney’s fees: Flat Fee or Hourly.

There is not one best method, in some situations the flat fee will be more convenient for the client, in other situations the hourly model will be more cost effective.

Flat Fee Probate Attorney Services

When quoting a flat fee, the probate attorney will first examine the complexity of the summary administration. Factors that probate attorneys examine in order to quote a flat fee include:

  • value of the probate assets;
  • quantity of the probate assets;
  • amount of beneficiaries;
  • whether the beneficiaries are in agreement; and
  • creditors of the deceased person.

Depending on the complexity of the summary administration, the typical going rate for flat fees of Miami probate attorneys for a summary administration in Miami-Dade County is anywhere between $1,000 and $2,500, plus the cost involved in the Miami-Dade Probate Court.

Hourly Fee for Probate Attorney Services

Most Miami probate attorney charge between $250 an hour to $450 an hour depending on the experience of the probate attorney.

Summary Administration takes a lot less time than a formal administration. Typically, all the documents needed like the Petition for Summary Administration are filed in one batch. Once the Miami-Dade Probate Court ascertains that all the information is correct and there are no issues, then a Miami-Dade Probate Judge will enter an order for the distribution of the assets.

Contact our Miami Probate Attorney for a free consultation

I have a lot of experience with the summary administration in Miami-Dade County and other counties throughout Florida. I want to help you petition for the summary administration of your loved one.

Contact me at (305) 489-1415 or complete the form to reach my office. If you have any questions or concerns do not hesitate to reach out, I am always happy to answer any questions you may have, whether you end up retaining my firm or not.