Rule 5.302 Commencement of Decedent Estates

(A) Methods of Commencement. A decedent estate may be commenced by filing an application for an informal proceeding or a petition for a formal testacy proceeding. A request for supervised administration may be made in a petition for a formal testacy proceeding. When filing either an application or petition to commence a decedent estate, a copy of the death certificate must be attached. If the death certificate is not available, the petitioner may provide alternative documentation of the decedent's death. Requiring additional documentation, such as information about the proposed or appointed personal representative, is prohibited.

(B) Sworn Testimony Form. At least one sworn testimony form sufficient to establish the identity of heirs and devisees must be submitted with the application or petition that commences proceedings. A sworn testimony form must be executed before a person authorized to administer oaths.

(C) Preservation of Testimony. If a hearing is held, proofs included as part of the record are deemed preserved for further administration purposes.

(D) Petition by Parent of Minor. In the interest of justice, the court may allow a custodial parent who has filed an appearance to file a petition to commence proceedings in a decedent estate on behalf of a minor child where the child is an interested person in the estate.