Small Estate Affidavits

In Arizona a successor or a beneficiary named under a Will can collect personal property or transfer title to real property by Affidavit procedure, provided that:

Additionally, if the decedent’s interest in any property has a beneficiary designation, joint tenant, or other payable on death provision, then that property will pass directly to the named beneficiary or surviving tenant.

  • The beneficiary or surviving tenant must provide a certified death certificate to the institution where the property is held and that property will be turned over to the successor.
  • These designations are common with bank accounts, investment accounts, stock, savings bonds, motor vehicles.
  • See Arizona Revised Statutes Section 14-6101 for more information on nonprobate transfers.

Property which passes to designated beneficiaries or surviving tenants is not counted in calculations for purposes of determining the value of a decedent’s estate and use of affidavit procedures. The affidavits are summary probate procedures and only property subject to probate is counted.

  •  It is not uncommon to find property held by a decedent which still has the name of the decedent’s predeceased spouse.
  • In such an instance some counties will accept an Affidavit for a consolidated estate; others will not; the forms in this Library do not cover these circumstance.  Please contact Cautela Corporation for additional assistance.
  • The Affidavit forms in this Library document the death of one decedent only.

Affidavit procedures can only be used there is no court proceeding opened to appoint a personal representative or to probate a Will or a prior court proceeding has been closed for at least one year and the total equity value of all the property subject to collection or transfer under the affidavit process does not exceed statutory amounts.

An Affidavit for Collection of Personal Property can be used to collect assets such as bank accounts, vehicles, stock, and debts due to the decedent provided the total amount of all the personal property to be collected does not exceed $75,000.00. More information on specific property, collection requirements and time restrictions can be found here.

An Affidavit of Succession to Real Property will transfer a decedent’s interest in real property to his or her named beneficiaries under a Will or to the heirs (defined by statute), if there is no Will provided the total equity value of all the real estate owned by the decedent at death does not exceed $100,000.00. More information on transfer of real property interests and time restrictions can be found here.