Probate Court

Small Estate Disposition – Not Probated

Wearing Apparel and Cash of $500 or less. MCL 700.3981

Decedent wearing apparel and cash of $500.00 or less may be transferred to a decedent's spouse, child or parent without court approval or intervention.

Who may transfer?

  1. Hospital
  2. Convalescent or nursing home
  3. Morgue
  4. Law enforcement agency

What is required?

  1. Proof of identity of spouse, child or parent.
  2. Sworn statement for verification of relationship.
  3. Sworn statement that there is no application or petition pending for estate administration.

The transferor is released to the same extent as if delivery were made to a legally qualified personal representative. The person receiving the decedent's property is answerable to a person with a prior right and accountable to personal representative of the decedent's estate appointed after the transfer.

Transfer of Vehicles at the Secretary of State. MCL 257.236

Title to registered vehicles may be transferred without court intervention if the total values of the decedent's solely owned vehicles does not exceed $60,000.00 and there is no other property for which probate court administration is required.

How is the title transferred?

  1. Complete the Secretary of State Form TR- 29, Certification From The Heir to a Vehicle, available at a Secretary of State office or at;
  2. Attach the vehicle title (if available) to the form;
  3. Present a certified copy of the death certificate of the vehicle owner;
  4. Certificate of title will be furnished according to the following priority:
    1. Spouse
    2. Heirs
  5. If the title is held jointly, with the title indicating "full rights to survivor" printed in it, then all that is needed to transfer the vehicle to the survivor's name is the title and a copy of the death certificate.

Money due from Decedent's Employer for Wages and Fringe Benefits. MCL 408.480

Money from wages or fringe benefits may be transferred without court intervention if there is no other property for which probate court estate administration is required.

Who may receive payment?

  1. Fringe benefits are payable as designated by the terms of the employer's contract, policy or plan.
  2. Wages and fringe benefits are payable to the person(s) designated in a statement signed by the employee and filed with the employer before the employee's death.
  3. Any wages and fringe benefits not covered by #1 or #2 shall be payable to the employee's survivors according to the following priority:
    1. Spouse
    2. Children
    3. Mother or father
    4. Sister or brother
  4. Payment will be a full discharge and release of the employer from the wages and fringe benefits due and owing the deceased employee.

Transfer by Affidavit. MCL 700.3933

An estate consisting of entirely personal property may qualify for this procedure. Twenty-eight days or more after the decedent's death, a person holding the decedent's property must deliver it to the decedent's successor when the successor presents the death certificate and a sworn statement using Affidavit of Decedent's Successor for Delivery of Certain Assets Owned by Decedent (Form PC598), which must state that:

  1. The estate does not include real property;
  2. 28 days have passed since the decedent's death;
  3. An application or petition for appointment of personal representative is not pending or has not been granted;
  4. The successor is entitled to the payment or delivery of the property;
  5. The name and address of any other person that is entitled to a share of the property;
  6. The estate value, less liens and encumbrances, does not exceed the annual Cost-of Living Adjustments for the year of death. Refer to the following link for the annual adjusted amount listed under the Economic Reports section titled “Estates and Protected Individuals Code Cost-of-Living Adjustments to Specific Dollar Amounts”
    Michigan Department of Treasury