TN 11 (01-14)
GN 02315.060 Michigan Small Estates
A. Policy for Michigan small estate affidavit
1. Basic statute
Under Michigan Compiled Laws — Section 700.3983, where the decedent’s estate excludes real property and the value of the entire estate is $15,000 or less, adjusted as provided in Michigan Statutues and Codes — Section 700.1210, a person indebted to or holding personal property of the decedent must pay the indebtedness or deliver the personal property to the person claiming to be the decedent’s successor when such claiming successor presents a proper affidavit and the decedent’s death certificate.
2. Contents of affidavit
The claiming successor or his or her representative must make the affidavit and state the following:
The estate does not include real property and the value of the entire estate, wherever located, net of liens and encumbrances, does not exceed $15,000, adjusted as provided in Section 1210.
Twenty-eight days have elapsed since the decedent’s death.
An application or petition for the appointment of a personal representative is not pending or granted in any jurisdiction.
The claiming successor is entitled to payment or delivery of the property.
The name and address of each person entitled to a share of the property and each person’s entitled portion.
Mich. Comp. Laws, Section 700.1210 states that the $15,000 amount applies to decedents who die before 1/1/2001, and that, for decedents who die after 12/31/2000, the $15,000 amount shall be multiplied by the cost-of-living adjustment factor for the calendar year in which the decedent dies, and the resulting product rounded to the nearest $1,000. The Michigan Department of Treasury publishes the cost-of-living adjustment factor and the adjusted amount for each year, which is online at: Estates and Protected Individuals Code Cost-of-living Adjustments to Specific Dollar Amounts. Also, the Michigan State Court Administrative Office has established a standardized form for use as an affidavit that can be found online at:
Affidavit of Decedent’s Successor for Delivery of Certain Assets Owned by Decedent.
3. Good acquittance
Payment of an underpayment pursuant to an affidavit discharges and releases us to the same extent as if the claiming successor were the personal representative of the decedent. There is no obligation to inquire into the truth of any statements in the affidavit. For effect of sworn statement, see Mich. Comp. Laws Section 700.3984(1).
B. Policy for Michigan summary administration proceedings
Michigan Compiled Laws — Mich. Comp. Laws Section 700.3982 provides for summary administration of an estate where the balance of the gross estate, after payment of the decedent’s funeral and burial expenses, is $15,000 or less, adjusted as provided in Mich. Comp. Laws Section 700.1210. In such case, a court may order the property turned over to the surviving spouse or, if there is none, to the decedent’s heirs. If a person seeking legal representative status presents a court order for summary administration pursuant to Mich. Comp. Laws Section 700.3982, see GN 02301.035D.