Probate/Wills and Estate Administration – General Information

In order to probate (put to record) a will and to qualify an executor or administrator of a decedent’s estate, you must appear in the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office in the County in which the decedent resided at the time of death. Probate matters are normally handled by appointment. Appointments generally last approximately 45 minutes to an hour.

It is important to keep in mind that the personal representative (executor or administrator) of an estate is charged by law with numerous responsibilities. It is the legal obligation of the personal representative to fully understand and discharge his/her required duties.

Further details may be obtained from the Circuit Court Clerk. Your attorney and accountant can provide assistance as well.

Scheduling a Probate Appointment

If you have access to a fax machine and a will exists, please fax the will and death certificate to the attention of the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office’s Probate Division at 804-501-5214. Include contact information so that a probate clerk may contact you as soon as possible after reviewing the will. DO NOT write on the will itself.

If you do not have access to a fax machine and/or if there was no will, please call the Probate Section of the Clerk’s Office at 804-501-4763 or 501-4316. If a will exists, please have it in hand when contacting the Clerk’s Office so that certain legal requirements can be confirmed over the telephone.

Probate/Wills and Estate – Forms

Many forms relating to estate matters are made available through the web site of the Supreme Court of Virginia at www.courts.state.va.us. (Circuit Court Forms/Fiduciary)

 


After Qualification

After qualifying, you may contact the Commissioner of Accounts who has been appointed to oversee the actions of fiduciaries and is responsible for reviewing and approving inventories and accountings. Henrico County Commissioner of Accounts, Edwin A. Bischoff, Esquire, www.henricocommissionerofaccounts.com . His mailing address is P.O. Box 31480, Henrico, VA 23294. The street address is 8500 Mayland Drive, Henrico, VA 23294. Telephone is (804) 346-4700 – main. (804) 273-0840 – FAX. The Commissioner of Accounts will be able to help you AFTER qualification.