Thursday's, October 19th, 2017, regularly scheduled commission meeting has been postponed and rescheduled for Thursday, October 26, 2017. The quarterly review to close estates and approve estates opened since the last quarterly review will now take place on Thursday, October 26, 2017. Thank you and sorry for any inconvenience.
Jefferson County Clerk, Jacki Shadle, and her clerks are pleased to announce that the Clerk’s office will begin accepting credit cards and electronic checks as a form of payment on April 10, 2017. The payments will be processed by Point & Pay, one of the fastest–growing companies in the convenience pay industry.
Users will pay a convenience fee of 2.5% ($2.00 minimum convenience fee) on credit card payments and a $3.00 convenience fee on e-checks up to $10,000. It will appear as two separate payment transactions: one for the purchase and a second for the convenience fee.
We are able to accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.
Sample Credit Card Transaction:
$56 Marriage License + $2.00 Convenience Fee = $58 Transaction TotalThe probate office assists in the process of administering an estate. Our probate clerks will explain the procedures. Please call ahead to schedule an appointment to ensure time to answer questions and discuss the probate process.
Please contact either clerk to make an appointment.
Lynn Fields, Deputy Clerk
Karen Olden, Deputy Clerk
Please seek legal council for assistance in the preparation of legal documents such as wills and power of attorneys. Our office is not able to assist in the preparation of these documents.
What is probate?
What is the probate process?
WHAT TO BRING WITH YOU:
In order to be appointed as Personal Representative of a decedent’s estate you will need to bring the following information with you to the Jefferson County Probate Office:
1. You will need to bring a certified copy of the death certificate if the decedent died out of state. If the decedent died in Jefferson County, WV, it is not necessary to have the death certificate as long as you have the basic information on the decedent including his/her social security number.
2. The ORIGINAL will and/or codicil, if there is one.
3. The names and mailing addresses of the heirs. If you are unsure of who might be an heir we will assist you upon you’re arrival to our office.
4. The approximate value of all personal property held SOLELY in the decedent’s name, excluding real estate.
5. In cases where there is no will, you will need to make arrangements to bring someone other than yourself who owns real estate in Jefferson County, WV to come with you. If this person resides in a county other than Jefferson County, they will need to get a Justification of Surety from their county courthouse. This is to act as surety on your bond. If you are an out-of-state resident, you will need to be bonded through an insurance company. The probate office will make these arrangements for you. There is an additional fee for an insurance bond. In some cases when there is a will, it may be required to have surety for your bond as well.
Once this information is provided to the probate office, you will need to sign papers to be appointed as personal representative. There are some circumstances in which you may not be able to qualify on your first visit. There is a qualification fee which varies. This fee is normally between $70 and $100 depending on several factors including whether or not you need surety. Be sure to have this with you. Currently, we can only accept cash or check.
THE APPRAISAL PROCESS
Once the appraisement booklet is filed, there is a publication. There is a 90 day waiting period for creditors or beneficiaries to put claims against the estate.
Once the waiting period is over and all claims are released, you may file the Final Accounting or Waiver of Final Settlement form. The fee for filing this form is usually $11, but can vary. This is your last step with our office. Once filed, it will go to the County Commission at their next quarterly meeting where they will look it over for final approval.
Probate Terms & Definitions
Administrator CTA ("Cum Testamento Annexo" or "with the will annexed"): an administrator of the estate other than the named executor in a will who serves when all named executors are unable to serve due to death, incapacity or renunciation of their right to serve
Beneficiary: a person or organization entitled to receive a portion of the estate
Bond: a written document in which the obligor formally recognizes an obligation to pay money in the event the obligor does not properly perform his or her duties
Certificate of Qualification: the form that the personal representative receives from the clerk at the time of qualification; it states that a person has qualified as executor or administrator and has authority to act on behalf of the estate; it is sometimes referred to as Letters Testamentary
Codicil: a supplement or an addition to a will which may explain, modify, add to, subtract from, qualify, alter, restrain, or revoke provisions in an existing will
Creditor: a person or organization owed money by the decedent
Decedent: the deceased person
Estate: the decedent's property, including real estate, personal property and all other assets owned or controlled by decedent at the time of his/her death
Executor: the person named in decedent's will to administer the estate; to accept the appointment, the executor must qualify before the clerk
Fiduciary: a person in a position of trust with respect to another's property; a general term used to refer to executor, administrator or trustee
Heirs at Law: a person(s) who would inherit the decedent's estate if the decedent died without a will
Holographic Will: a will written entirely by the testator with his own hand and not witnessed/attested
Intestate Estate: an estate to be administered without a will
Inventory: a detailed list of articles; a list or schedule of property containing designation or description of such specific article
Personal Representative: either the executor or the administrator of the estate
Probate: the procedure whereby a will is admitted to record in the clerk's office; it is also used to include the process of qualifying a person as an executor or administrator of an estate; it sometimes is referred to as the entire process of administering an estate
Qualification: the procedure whereby a person is appointed by the clerk to serve as executor or administrator of a decedent's estate
Self-Proved Will: a will that includes a notarized affidavit of the testator and attesting witnesses (see Virginia Code §64.1-87.1 & Virginia Code §64.1-87.2, as amended, for specific language)
Testator: one who dies leaving a will
Testate Estate: an estate to be administered pursuant to a will