Copy of Transferring Real Estate in Colorado Probate, Part Two
Last month we discussed the process by which Colorado real estate is transferred when a Colorado resident dies. This month we will explore how Colorado real estate is transferred at death if the decedent was not a Colorado resident.
Colorado is a popular state for second home ownership. People living in other states often enjoy having a second house somewhere in the Colorado mountains. Owning property in two states can often complicate the probate process when the owner dies. If the owner fails to properly plan for the transfer of the properties before she dies, it is likely that two probates will need to be opened to transfer the properties – one in her home state, and one in Colorado. The primary probate would be opened in her home state. The probate in Colorado is referred to as an ancillary probate.
Ancillary probate is the process of obtaining recognition in Colorado of an out-of-state personal representative’s authority to act on behalf of a decedent regarding real property located in this state. The state in which the personal representative is originally appointed only has jurisdiction and authority within its own borders. To properly execute a deed conveying Colorado real estate, a foreign personal representative must have the Colorado courts recognize his authority to act on behalf of the decedent’s estate here.
To open an ancillary probate in Colorado, the personal representative files a sworn statement with the Colorado court in the county where the real estate is located. The personal representative declares that there is no other probate proceeding opened in this state, and attaches certified copies of the original court order appointing the personal representative in his home state and a certified copy of the Letters issued by the original court. The Colorado probate court then issues a document to the personal representative referred to as a Certificate of Ancillary Filing.
Once the Certificate is obtained from the court, the personal representative can demonstrate the required authority needed to legally transfer real estate in Colorado. He will execute a personal representative’s deed, and record the deed (together with the original copy of the Certificate of Ancillary Filing) in the county where the property is located.
If you need assistance with a personal representative’s deed or any other matter related to probate or real estate, please feel free to contact my office. I can also help sell properties in probate, as I am a licensed Colorado Realtor. We would enjoy assisting you.