Do I need to go through Probate?

Do I need to go through Probate?
My mother past away. One week before she died she did a Quit Claim deed and put the house in the her name, my sisters name, and my name. The home is worth about 180,000. This is the only asset she had. She was on MediCal for many years, so I know that the state will put a lien on the property once I contact the Revenue and Recovery office. I am trying to avoid the cost of attorney fees and probate costs. I contacted her mortgage company and they have informed me of the following:

In order for the loan to be transferred into my sister and my names, that we must first submit a Letter of Administration. My mother had no Will or Trust. After doing some research of my own, I found that I will have to Petition for Probate in order to receive this. Why wont the Quit Claim Deed suffice? Other than the filing fees, how much does Probate cost? Can I do this on my own withough the help of an attorney? Nobody will contest anything. The only next of kin are my sister and me. There were no other assets. If the state is going to take a huge portion due to the MediCal she received, I would like to avoid as much other fees as possible. Please help. Thanks.

3 thoughts on “Do I need to go through Probate?

  1. Re: Do I need to go through Probate?
    If the quit claim deed made you joint tenants, the transfer can be accomplished by recording an affidavit of joint tenancy. If the deed simply made you tenants in common, you will probably have to file a probate petition. As for the lender, the best thing to do may be to refinance the property or simply pay the mortgage. Your situation presents some interesting issues; you should consider speaking to an attorney.

    Scott Schomer
    Schomer Law Group
    8740 Sepulveda Boulevard, Suite 107
    Los Angeles, 90045

  2. Re: Do I need to go through Probate?
    Check the quitclaim deed language–if you are joint tenants, probate is not required. If nothing is stated, or “tenants in common” is stated, a probate proceeding, or at least a summary probate proceeding, will be required. You can do it on your own, but probate can be difficult. Also, I’d recommend talking with an attorney about your options with the Medi-Cal lien repayment–you just want to be sure you don’t overpay.

    Chris Johnson
    Christopher B. Johnson, Attorney at Law
    790 East Colorado Boulevard, Ninth Floor
    Pasadena, CA 91101

  3. Re: Do I need to go through Probate?
    This is a case in which you are going to need representation in order to transfer the mortgage and have the medical lien compromised. The estate may also have to go through probate. Call me directly at (619) 222-3504.

    2185 Sunset Cliffs Blvd.
    San Diego, CA 92107

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