Distributing property and assets after an estate owner’s death in the state of Oklahoma can be done through probate (a common court-supervised proceeding). If you have questions about the average cost of probate in Oklahoma, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, it’s not a simple answer. Cost will vary largely, depending on things like:
Size and complexity of an estate
If any heirs contest the Will
What type of Estate Plans the owner created
Whether or not a probate attorney is used
Common Probate Fees in Oklahoma
Even though there tends to be a wide range of probate costs, some fees are pretty typical. Some or all of the following will likely need to be paid as you go through probate:
Court and filing fees
Probate Bond to qualify the Executor (Personal Representative)
Personal Representative compensation - Oklahoma sets compensation by statute - ranging from two and a half percent to five percent based on the value of the estate
Various other professional fees (Land Surveyors; Appraisers; Accountants; etc.)
Common Questions About Probate in Oklahoma
How Long Does Probate Take in Oklahoma?
In the state of Oklahoma, probate can take anywhere from four to six months, although complicated estates can take much longer to settle.
How Much Does a Probate Lawyer Cost in Oklahoma?
Probate lawyer fees in Oklahoma will vary based on a number of factors like the attorney’s experience and how extensive the estate is. Probate attorneys can bill by the hour, or they may charge a flat fee. Average hourly probate attorney fees in Oklahoma can range from $150 - $300/hour, and it’s not uncommon for a very basic, simple estate to cost a minimum of $2,500 in estimated legal fees.
How to Avoid Probate in Oklahoma?
Some people want to avoid probate, and with good reason. It can be stressful on a number of fronts. You could potentially avoid probate in Oklahoma by:
Establishing a Revocable Living Trust
Keeping your beneficiaries up to date
Titling property as Joint Tenancy; Community Property with Right of Survivorship; or Tenancy by the Entirety
Naming assets and accounts as “TOD” or “POD” (Transfer on Death; Payable on Death)
In Oklahoma, estates with a value that doesn’t meet or exceed the “small estate” threshold can likely avoid probate (or at least go through a shortened version of it).
What is Considered a Small Estate in Oklahoma?
Under the Oklahoma small estate threshold, you may be able to use:
Summary Probate Procedure: Can be used in cases where an estate is valued at less than $200,000; the decedent passed away five or more years ago; the decedent lived in another state at the time of his/her passing
Affidavit: Can be used if fair market value of the estate is $20,000 or under
Who Pays Probate Fees in Oklahoma?
Probate attorney fees in Oklahoma (along with all other probate costs) are paid for out of the estate.