What types of assets are not probate assets in Tennessee?

Posted on Feb 19 2013 10:32AM by Attorney, Jason A. Lee

It is important to determine what assets are probate assets and what assets are not probate assets to determine whether an estate needs to be probated under Tennessee Law.  It is important to plan ahead in order to keep as many assets out of the probate process if possible.  Assets that do not pass through the probate process include the following:


1.         Any 401k plan, IRA plan or any other type of retirement plan that designates a specific beneficiary (other than where the beneficiary is designated as the decedent's estate).


2.         Any asset including bank accounts, real estate, automobiles or other assets that are titled in the name of the deceased individual and another individual as joint tenants or tenants by the entirety with right of survivorship.  These assets pass immediately upon death to the other individual.


3.         Any asset of any kind that are titled in the decedent's name with a "transfer on death" or "pay on death" designation for a specific beneficiary other than the decedent's estate.


4.         Any life insurance policy which has a specific beneficiary designated other than the estate of the deceased individual.

It is important to determine what assets are probate assets and what assets are not probate assets in order to determine whether a will needs to be probated under Tennessee law.  A Tennessee probate attorney should be consulted to determine how to make this decision after an individual dies.  Additionally certain decisions can be made before death in order to reduce or eliminate what assets pass through the probate process.

TAGS: Life Insurance, Retirement plans - 401k etc., Real Estate, Probate Assets, Tennessee Probate Law
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Jason A. Lee is a Member of Burrow Lee, PLLC. Contact Jason at 615-540-1004 or jlee@burrowlee.com for an initial consultation on wills estate planning and probate issues.

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Tennessee Wills and Estates Blog
Jason A. Lee, Member of Burrow Lee, PLLC
611 Commerce Street, Suite 2603
Nashville, TN 37203
Phone: 615-540-1004
E-mail: jlee@burrowlee.com