The Probate Process in Maryland: Small and Regular Estate Proceedings in Maryland



Welcome back to Part 6 of our probate series for Maryland! The Gormley Law Office is pleased to present this information! We are a full service probate law firm in Kensington, Maryland. Call us today at 1.240.514.2358  for a free consultation to discuss your probate matter. We can help!

In this post, we’re discussing two types of estate proceedings in Maryland. An estate proceeding is essentially opening a probate case.

And by the way: If you missed any of our previous posts, please see our index to the whole probate in Maryland series.

The value of the assets only in the name of the decedent alone or as tenants in common determines the type of case that is opened. This is because probate assets are only assets held in the name of decedent alone or as tenants in common. Assets owned by a trust are not probated.

Regular Estate: If the  property  of  the  decedent  subject  to  administration  in  Maryland  is valued in  excess  of  $50,000  (or  $100,000  if  spouse  is  the  sole  legatee  or  heir) the estate shall be administered as a regular estate. In establishing the value of an estate only the assets held in the name of a  decedent  alone  and/or  an  interest  held  as  tenants  in  common are considered. The value is determined  by the fair market value of property less debts of  record  secured  by  the  property,  as  of  the   date   of   death,   to   the   extent   that   insurance  benefits  are  not  payable  to  the  lien   holder   or   secured   party   for   the secured debt.

Small Estate: If the property of  the  decedent  subject  to  administration  in  Maryland  is  established  to  have  a  value  of  $50,000  or  less  (or  $100,000 if the spouse is the sole legatee or  heir)  the  estate  may  be  administered  as  a  small  estate.  In  establishing  the  value of an estate only the assets held in the  name  of  a  decedent  alone  and/or  an  interest  held  as  tenants  in  common  are  considered.  The  value  is  determined  by  the  fair  market  value  of  property  less  debts  of  record  secured  by  the  property  as of the date of death, to the extent that insurance  benefits  are  not  payable  to  the  lien   holder   or   secured   party   for   the   secured debt. The value of the assets in the name of the decedent alone or a tenant in common determines the type of estate that is required.

Either type of case is opened in the county in which the decedent had his domicile at the time of death.  And, if  a  person dies  owning  any  property  in  his  or  her  name  alone  or  as  tenants  in  common  it  is  required that an estate be opened in the Register  of  Wills  office.


Brian Gormley, Esq. is an attorney licensed in Maryland and the District of Columbia specializing in real estate, probate, estate litigation and other matters. If you need assistance, please use the Contact Feature at the bottom of this page.
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Probate, Estate Planning and Real Estate Attorney
Brian Gormley, Esq. is an attorney licensed in Maryland and the District of Columbia specializing in real estate, probate, estate litigation and other matters. If you need assistance, please use the Contact Feature at the bottom of this page.
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