What is an affidavit of heirship?

“What is an affidavit of heirship?” is a question commonly asked when a deceased person did not leave a will. 

An affidavit of heirship is a legal document used to transfer property left by a deceased individual.

Typically completed by a family member or close friend of the deceased, this person must have family knowledge and be able to verify the identities of heirs. 

What is an affidavit?

An affidavit is a written statement where a person promises to tell the truth — it is used in legal situations as evidence. 

What is an affidavit?” is a question that comes up more often than you might think, and in different legal contexts.

Ranging from immigration applications to business transactions, there are lots of situations where a written statement of facts is needed to support a claim.  

The person making the statement must sign it to swear that what they’re saying is true.

A notary public or another authorized official confirms both the person’s identity and that they made the statement under oath.

Heirship meaning: What is it?

When someone passes away, their surviving family members are referred to as heirs.

In typical circumstances, heirs are close relatives like children, grandchildren, or parents.

If there’s no close family involved, then other relations such as cousins, aunts, and uncles can often be considered heirs.

When someone passes away without a will, the state decides who will receive their property and belongings based on laws called “intestacy laws.” 

These laws determine both who the heirs are and who will inherit the deceased’s assets.

Determining heirship without an affidavit of heirship can be complex and involve several legal processes, such as probate, depending on the case’s specific circumstances. 

An affidavit of heirship simplifies the transfer of assets without going through a formal and lengthy probate process. 

What is an affidavit of heirship?

An affidavit of heirship (also known as an inheritance affidavit) is a legal document containing information about a deceased person, such as their name, date of birth, and date of death.

It also lists the beneficiaries entitled to receive a share of the deceased person’s assets.

Knowing the basics of what an affidavit is, how to create one, and what information needs to be in an affidavit can help individuals protect their legal interests.

The affidavit must be signed by the beneficiaries and notarized before a court filing.

Once the court approves the affidavit, the beneficiaries are allowed to take possession of the document’s listed assets. 

Why is an affidavit of heirship important?

An affidavit of heirship can be used to transfer ownership of property, such as money, real estate, or vehicles, without the need for a formal probate process. 

Therefore, an affidavit of heirship is usually applicable when a decedent passes without a will and only has a lower amount of money or assets.

An heir can file an affidavit of heirship and skip the longer “administration of the estate” process. 

Ultimately, this can save time and money for the heirs and simplify the transfer of assets.

When is an affidavit of heirship form used?

An affidavit of heirship form can apply in the case of:

  • Inheritance of real estate: To transfer ownership of the real estate property to the legal heirs.
  • Inheritance of personal property: To transfer ownership of personal property, such as vehicles and bank accounts. 
  • Simplified probate proceedings: In some states, an affidavit of heirship form may be used to avoid a formal probate proceeding, especially if the value of the estate is below a certain threshold.
  • Insurance claims: An affidavit of heirs form may also be used to establish the legal heirs of a deceased person’s estate when making a claim on a life insurance policy.

If you need to know how to fill out an affidavit of heirship, it’s important to get some advice from a legal professional — one who is familiar with the laws in your area.

This way, you can get the guidance you need to ensure that the document is completed accurately and adheres to applicable laws and regulations.

What are some affidavit of heirship samples?

Samples of affidavit of heirships can be found, together with an affidavit of heirship Texas template on PandaDoc’s template document platform. 

This sample provides you with the best starting point to create your own affidavit of inheritance. 

Create your affidavit with PandaDoc

PandaDoc provides an affidavit of heirship form template that you can simply customize to meet your own requirements.

The entire process can be handled by PandaDoc, including eSignatures. 

Once you’ve downloaded the template, you’ll go ahead and fill in the information relating to the relevant parties.

An eSignature is required before you can proceed to online notarization.  

Next, you must sign the document in the presence of a notary public and submit it with a copy of the death certificate.

The online notarization tab allows you to certify your affidavit via a live video session with a state-approved notary — all without leaving your home or office. 

An affidavit of heirship is just one document type PandaDoc offers.

You’ll find plenty of other document templates, including an affidavit of service template in the templates section within PandaDoc. 

There’s plenty more where that came from, too, to discover how PandaDoc can help with more personal and business agreements, why not sign up for a 14-day free trial