Probate typically involves the following steps:

1.   Send the original Last Will and Testament and an original death

 certificate with a raised seal to the Surrogate in the County in which

 the decedent resided. 


2.  Many Surrogates request that you complete an "Information Sheet"

 which contains background information about the decedent, the

 decedent's assets, and the decedent's next of kin.  If you send this

 information to  the Surrogate in advance of your visit, it greatly

 reduces the amount of time required with the Surrogate.


3.   The executor named in the Last Will must appear before a

 representative of the Surrogate to sign documents evidencing the

 person's desire to serve as executor and the person's understanding

 that the  executor's actions are under the supervision of the



4.  Bring a personal check or money order for the Surrogate fees,

 which will usually be less than $250.00.  Many Surrogates accept

 credit cards.


Please check the Surrogates' web sites (e.g.; Monmouth County Surrogate,

 Ocean County Surrogate, Union County Surrogate) as they contain valuable

 information about probate as well as directions to their office and

 hours of operation. 

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