I Was Told I Need to Go Get Letters Testamentary – What is that?

“Letters Testamentary” is actually a court document issued by the Texas probate court.  In the Dallas area, you will obtain letters testamentary from the Dallas County Probate Court, Collin County Probate Court, Denton County Probate Court or Tarrant County Probate Court.

Many times, after a family member has died, the bank or other institution will ask for letters testamentary before they can transfer funds to the beneficiaries. Sometimes, the bank will tell you to go get letters testamentary from an attorney or the court–as if it’s something you can just waltz down and get.  Of course, it’s not that simple…

If the person passed away with a will, letters testamentary will be granted by the probate court to the executor named in the will.  If the person died without a will, the probate court will grant “letters of administration,” which is basically the equivalent to letters testamentary.

How to get Letters Testamentary in Texas.  To obtain letters testamentary, first you’ll need to hire a probate lawyer.  “Probate” is the legal process you’ll go through with your attorney to get letters testamentary.  Don’t worry, though.  Hiring a probate attorney is not expensive and not difficult.  Since probate is so common, the probate process is really streamlined, and the probate attorney pretty much handles everything for you.  In fact, to get letters testamentary from the court, your attorney will complete all the necessary legal paperwork and attend a probate court hearing.

There may be alternatives to Letters Testamentary.  If the assets are minimal, you may be able to avoid probate.  The probate attorney will tell you the best and cheapest way to transfer the deceased person’s assets into your name–you may be able to use an affordable alternative to probate or avoid probate altogether.

Getting letters testamentary in Texas is fairly simple.  Compared to many other states, Texas has an easy and relatively cheap method for obtaining letters testamentary.  Although you will need an attorney to handle the probate court, the legal work is often quick and affordable.



Visit www.ShuttLawFirm.com for more information on getting Texas letters testamentary, avoiding probate, letters of administration, what to do if mom, dad, or other family died without a will, contact the probate lawyers at Shutt Law Firm.

Shutt Law Firm’s office is conveniently located just north of Dallas, TX, near the intersection of highway 75 and Arapaho Road in Richardson, TX.


You can also call Shutt Law Firm PLLC at (214) 302-8197 for more information on the topic discussed in this article or to discuss a different legal matter. Please consider the Shutt Law Firm if you need Texas letters testamentary or a probate lawyer in Dallas, Richardson, Plano, Allen, McKinney, Garland, Addison, TX or surrounding North Texas area.


DISCLAIMER: Nothing in this brief article constitutes legal advice. The information provided herein is merely provided in the spirit of education. If you have a legal question, you should consult an attorney for your specific legal situation. Further, nothing in this article shall be construed to have started an attorney-client relationship. No such relationship exists until both you and an attorney at Shutt Law Firm sign an engagement letter with the Shutt Law Firm, PLLC.