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Probate Law

This is a guide to statutes, books, and online resources on the topic of probate of an estate.

General Information

About This Guide

Many estates will go through the probate process after a person dies. This guide provides general information and resources about the probate law in Texas. Because the process can be complicated, it may be necessary to contact an attorney with specific questions. Please consult our Legal Help research guide if you need assistance finding an attorney.

Please refer to the Practice Aids tab to locate drafting guides and other practitioner-oriented resources.

Texas Laws

Texas probate process is primarily governed by the Texas Estates Code. It replaced the former Texas Probate Code on Jan. 1, 2014. Some older resources may still reference the Probate Code, but that information will now be found in the Estates Code.

Understanding the Law

Because Texas and federal law may not be easy to understand, below you'll find a collection of resources that help to explain the law in simple terms.

General Information

Administering the Estate

Pro-Se Representation (Without an Attorney)

Contesting a Will

When There Is No Will

When a Loved One Passes Away


Below are links to free forms available from Texas organizations. Many forms are not available online and you may need to consult print resources or subscription databases available in your law library. You may also want to contact the clerk of your probate court to inquire about the availability of specific forms for your county.

Affidavits of Heirship

Small Estate Affidavits

E-Books Available from the Texas State Law Library

These e-books contain information on probate. These e-books can be viewed by those who have signed up for a free library account with the State Law Library. Only Texas residents are eligible to sign up. Signing up is free.

Books at the Texas State Law Library

These print books at the Texas State Law Library contain information on probate. If you are not able to visit the Library in Austin, these books might be available at a law library near you or a public library near you.

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