A Will is probated upon death. Probate is a legal process which establishes the genuineness of the Will. Gloucester County Surrogate, Helene M. Reed will make this determination. Probate has to be opened in the County where the decedent resided at his/her time of death.
A Will does not need to be probated if there are no titled assets in the decedent's name alone. If the decedent does have titled assets in their name alone, then the Will must be probated, regardless of the value of the estate.
The Executor must bring the original Will and original death certificate into the Surrogate's office to probate. If the Will is valid, the Executor will be appointed by the Surrogate and given the authority to transfer the decedent's assets. The Surrogate will issue a short certificate to the Executor.
A short certificate is the document issued by the Surrogate that the Executor will use as proof of their authority to transfer or sell the decedent's assets. A short certificate will be needed for the transfer or sale of every asset in the decedent's name alone. Determine how many assets there are and that is how many shorts will be needed. Typically, a short certificate is valid for up to a year. However, some places will only accept one dated within 60 days.
The Will may be offered for Probate anytime after the death occurs; however, the Surrogate cannot issue anything until the eleventh day. Please be advised that the fee for probating a Will starts at $100.00. Please see the fee's section of this website for exact cost.
It is not necessary to make an appointment to probate a Will and this office does not require you to be represented by an Attorney. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call 856-853-3282.
Probate Fact Sheet
Information sheet that Executor or Attorney can fill out before probate.
The County of Gloucester complies with all state and federal rules and regulations and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status or disability in admission to, access to, or operations of its programs, services, or activities. In addition, Gloucester County encourages the participation of people with disabilities in its programs and activities and offers special services to all County residents 60 years of age and older. Inquiries regarding compliance may be directed to the Office of Educational and Disability Services at 856-681-6128/New Jersey Relay Service 711 or the EEO office at 856-384-6903.