Probating A Will In Louisiana

The process for opening a succession in Louisiana is dependent on whether or not the decedent had a valid Last Will and Testament. If so, the will must be "proved." This is done by admitting the will to probate in Louisiana.

Choose the Right Place to File

Courts must have jurisdiction to decide the case. Because of this, it is important that the succession be opened in the correct Louisiana parish, determined as follows:

  • If the decedent lived in Louisiana at the time of death, the succession should be opened in the parish where the decedent was living;
  • If the decedent was not living in Louisiana at the time of death, the succession must be opened in the parish where the decedent owned real estate;
  • If the decedent was not residing in Louisiana at the time of death and didn't own any real estate in Louisiana, the succession should be opened in the parish where the decedent's other assets are located.

If the decedent doesn't fit within any of these categories, there's probably no need to open a Louisiana succession.

Affidavit of Death, Domicile, and Heirship

Proof concerning the decedent's domicile are presented to the court as part of the Affidavit of Death, Domicile, and Heirship. As the name suggests, the Affidavit of Death, Domicile, and Heirship also establishes the decedent's death and identifies his or her heirs. Death, marriage, and birth certificates can also be used to establish death and heirship.

The Affidavit of Death, Domicile, and Heirship must be signed by two people that know about the facts contained in the Affidavit.

Petition for Probate of Testament

A Petition for Probate of Testament is a document is prepared by the succession attorney, signed by the executor, and filed with the court. The purpose of the document is to request the court to recognize the validity of the will. If the Last Will and Testament is a notarial testament, it is considered to be self-proving. This means that no additional evidence is required to establish its validity before the court.

If the Last Will and Testament is in any other form, it is not considered to be self-proved. This requires additional evidence to demonstrate its validity to the court.