Who can serve as a personal representative in a Florida probate case?

There are several individuals or entities that could serve as a personal representative in a Florida probate case. If you're having trouble with a probate case you should schedule a consultation with Florida Bar Board Certified wills, trusts and estates expert Matthew A. Linde.

Requirements for a Personal Representative

A personal representative could be:
  • a trust company or bank with operations in Florida;
  • anyone who is a resident of Florida; or
  • a close relative or spouse (doesn't have to reside in Florida).  
  • The requirements are located in Florida Statutes 733.302. 733.303 and 733.304.

On the other hand, a personal representative cannot be a non-relative who doesn't reside in Florida.

As long as the decedent had a will, the personal representative named in the will must serve as long as eligibility requirements are met. If that person or entity is unable to serve or doesn't want to serve as the personal representative, then the beneficiaries will choose a personal representative.

If the deceased did not have a will, then Florida law provides that the deceased's surviving spouse may serve as personal representative. In cases in which the deceased was not married, or if the spouse is unwilling or unable to serve, then someone chosen by a majority of the beneficiaries will serve.

Since a Florida probate case can be very complex, it would be in your best interest to have an attorney review your case. An attorney who handles probate cases on a day-to-day basis can help you cut through the red tape and make the probate process as less stressful possible.

Help from an Estate Planning Attorney in Fort Myers is Just a Phone Call Away

Florida Bar Board Certified wills, trusts and estates expert Matthew A. Linde understands first hand the importance of careful estate planning and the complexities of financial legal matters, such as probate, tax litigation and guardianship. For help with your estate planning concerns, contact our Fort Myers office to schedule a one-on-one meeting with a professional who can answer your questions - 239-939-7100 or 844-357-0572.