Probate Court

Decedent Estates – Probated

NOTE: The Kalamazoo County Probate Court is prohibited from giving legal advice. You should always consult with an attorney if you have any questions about the administration of a decedent estate. MCL 700.1211

Petition for Assignment (“Small Estate”)

Petition for Assignment PC 556
700.3982 Court order distributing small estates states, in part:  
“Sec. 3982. (1) Upon a showing of evidence, satisfactory to the court, of payment of the expenses for the decedent's funeral and burial and if the balance of a decedent's gross estate consists of property of the value of $15,000.00 or less, the court may order that the property be turned over to the surviving spouse or, if there is not a spouse, to the decedent's heirs. 
The total value of the assets on the original and any amended petitions, after payment of funeral and burial expenses and less liens and encumbrances, shall not exceed the annual Cost-of Living Adjustment based on the year of death. Refer to the following link for the annual adjusted amount listed under the Economic Reports section.
Michigan Department of Treasury

List all information about the asset that is available.

  1. For bank accounts, show the name of the bank, and the balance at the date of death. Use MC 97 to show the bank account number
  2. For stocks and bonds, show the name of the corporation, number of shares, price per share, and total value at the date of death.
  3. For autos, trucks, boats, etc., include a description and the vehicle identification number.
  4. For real estate, list the complete legal description, not the street address.

Forms needed to open a file by "Petition for Assignment"

PC 556m – Petition for Assignment
MC 97 – Protected Personal Identify Information
Death Certificate
An itemized funeral bill marked "Paid in Full" which shows the amount paid and who paid it or the funeral bill plus a receipt from the funeral home showing amount of payment and person paying. If the funeral bill is not paid, you must have a copy of the bill showing the amount due.

FEES: Please include the $25.00 filing fee plus $13.00 for each certified copy of the Order for Assignment plus Inventory fee based on the inventory amount. This can be calculated under the Inventory Fees page. Filing fees

Informal Proceedings ("Application")

Informal proceedings are commenced by filing an Application for Informal Probate and/or Appointment of Personal Representative (Testate/Intestate) (Form PC558) and other related papers. The Application is for the Probate Register to admit the original will, if any, to probate and/or appoint a personal representative. If the Application is granted, the Register will sign a form called Register's Statement (Form PC568) admitting the will and/or appointing a personal representative. An appointed personal representative becomes qualified to act by filing an Acceptance of Appointment (Form PC571) and any required bond. The personal representative will proceed with unsupervised administration until the estate is closed (unless the judge orders that the estate becomes "supervised" following a petition requesting supervised administration).

Forms needed to open a file by "Application"

PC 558 – Application for Informal Probate and/or Appointment of Personal Representative
MC 97 – Protected Personal Identifying Information
PC 565 – Testimony to Identify Heirs
PC 568 – Registers Statement
PC 571 – Acceptance of Appointment
MC 97a – Addendum to Protected Personal Identifying Information
PC 572 – Letters of Authority
Death Certificate
Original Will (if applicable)

The following forms may be necessary based on your particular situation:

PC 566 - Supplemental Testimony to Identify Non-Heir Devisees
PC 557 - Notice of Intent to Request Informal Appointment of Personal Representative
PC 564 - Proof of Service
PC 563a – Publication of Notice
PC 567 - Renunciation of Right to Appoint, Nomination of Personal Representative and Waiver of Notice
PC 606 – Appearance of Parent – Required if an interested person is a minor
PC 617 – Declaration of Intent to Give Notice by Publication

FEES: Please include the $175.00 filing fee ($150 filing fee + $25.00 electronic filing system fee) plus $12.00 for each certified copy of Letters of Authority. Filing Fees

Formal Proceedings ("Petition")

Formal proceedings are commenced by filing a Petition for Probate and/or Appointment of Personal Representative (Testate/Intestate) (Form PC559) and other related papers. After either a court hearing with proper notice to all interested persons or upon full waiver and consent, the probate judge may enter an order called an Order of Formal Proceedings (Form PC569). This order may admit a will, determine the heirs of the deceased and appoint a personal representative. Once the order is entered, the personal representative qualifies to act by filing an Acceptance of Appointment (Form PC571) and any required bond. The personal representative will proceed with unsupervised administration until the estate is ready to be closed. A petition for a formal proceeding on any aspect of administration may be filed at any point. A judge then enters any applicable orders after either a court hearing with proper notice or upon filing of full waivers and consents.

Forms needed to open a file by "Petition"

PC 559 – Petition for Probate and/or Appointment of Personal Representative
MC 97 – Protected Personal Identifying Information
PC 565 – Testimony to Identify Heirs
PC 569 – Order of Formal Proceedings
PC 571 – Acceptance of Appointment
MC 97a – Addendum to Protected Personal Identifying Information
PC 572 – Letters of Authority
Death Certificate

The following forms may be necessary based on your particular situation:

PC 566 - Supplemental Testimony to Identify Non-Heir Devisees
PC 561 – Waiver/Consent                        
PC 562 – Notice of Hearing
PC 564 - Proof of Service
PC 563 – Publication of Notice of Hearing
PC 617 – Declaration of Intent to Give Notice by Publication
PC 606 – Appearance of Parent – Required if an interested person is a minor

FEES: Please include the $175.00 filing fee ($150 filing fee + $25.00 electronic filing system fee) plus $12.00 for each certified copy of Letters of Authority. Filing fees