What are “Letters Testamentary” in California Probate?

The gathering of assets in a probate gains momentum once “Letters Testamentary” are received from the probate court. The Letters Testamentary are a legal document obtained from a probate court after a petition for probate is examined by a judge. These type of letters are issued when a decedent had a will and named an executor to oversee the decedent’s estate.

The Letters Testamentary grant the power to the executor to handle the decedent’s affairs. Most banks, financial companies and other institutions require the executor to show or submit the Letters Testamentary in order to gain access to accounts.

As long as your petition for probate is in order, it usually takes a few weeks to receive the Letters Testamentary after your petition is filed.

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