Does Pennsylvania have a simplified small estate procedure?
Pennsylvania does offer a special process to administer estates without the need for formal probate where the decedent’s personal property does not exceed $50,000. However, using a “Small Estate Petition” in Pennsylvania does not eliminate the requirement to pay creditors and taxes. Also, if the decedent owned real property of any value, formal probate will be necessary. In addition to the “Small Estate Petition” procedure, Pennsylvania has other probate shortcuts that assist some families with transferring property more quickly and with less hassle. For example, Pennsylvania law permits financial institutions to release up to $10,000 to certain surviving family members without opening an estate as long as the funeral expenses have already been paid.