Trust and Estate Solutions
first PROBATE Loans

Hi, I'm Jonathan Brooks, the principal of First Probate. First Probate provides short term loans to fiduciaries - executors, administrators, trustees, conservators and guardians - who borrow on behalf of trusts and estates.  First Probate specializes in resolving challenging and difficult problems related to title reports. I have provided these services to the probate community for more than 20 years.


First Probate is happy to provide you with a complimentary property profile, recorded lien and last vesting deed, upon request (Send us an email). 


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Here's hoping we continue to stay in touch and that we may be of service to you!


Very truly yours,

Jonathan Brooks  



  'Jack of all Trades'
How to use Probate Code Section 850
Probate Code Section 850 ("Section 850) is a very useful tool for trust and estate attorneys. Section 850 provides for the determination of claims brought to determine ownership of real or personal property claimed by an estate, a ward or conservatee, or a trustee.
Section 850 is the successor to Probate Code Section 9860, with the purpose to "consolidate (a) decedent's estates, trusts, conservatorship and guardianships into one section; and, to provide for claims, causes of action, or matters that are normally raised in a civil action to the extent that the matters are related factually to the subject matter of the petition."   Senate Bill 669 introduced by Senator Charles Poohigian and enacted in 2001.
Attorneys often use Section 850 to transfer property (real and/or personal) from entity to entity (a trust or an estate).
There are countless, creative ways to use this tool, including the following.
  • A Heggestad Petition to return real property to a trust, when deeded out and never deeded back
  • Judicial Foreclosure, when the non-judicial foreclosure remedy (trustee sale) is not available, such as partial-interest deeds of trust, lost notes, or otherwise
  • To transfer property into an estate or new trust, when the vested Trust Declaration is missing to effectuate an action to borrow money or sell the property
  • To transfer property into a trust, when the deed vesting is not the exact same vesting as the Trust Declaration vesting
  • For use when property vested is in a minor or incapacitated person
Don't forget Probate Code Section 859, which can be alleged in the 850 petition. Section 859 allows for damages equal to twice the value of the property recovered, if the property of an estate is taken, concealed or disposed in bad faith.

Privacy Issues  
ID Theft 
Estate Sales  
Becoming an heir, executor or conservator can be a stressful experience. Liquidating the family home can lead to leaving behind years of documents - and opening the door to identify theft.
Brokerage accounts listing net assets and other banking information left behind can fall into the wrong hands. Driver's licenses, passports, tax returns, deeds and other important documents can inadvertently end up in a dumpster. At family-run estate sales, strangers have even been found searching medicine cabinets for drugs to use or to sell on the black market.
The Identity Theft Resource Center recommends the following steps to decrease identity theft risk after a death.
  1. Conduct notifications by phone and follow up (obligatory) in writing. Mail all correspondence certified, return receipt requested. Keep photocopies of all correspondence. 
  2. Obtain at least 12 copies of the official death certificate when it becomes available. In some cases you will be able to use a photocopy, but some businesses will request an original death certificate.
  3. Immediately notify relevant credit card companies, banks, stock brokers, loan/lien holders, mortgage companies, any collection agencies and other financial institutions. The executor or surviving spouse will need to discuss all outstanding debts, and will need to transfer the account to another person or close the account. If closing an account, ask the issuer to list it as "Closed. Account holder is deceased." 
  4. Immediately contact the credit reporting agencies in writing and request that they place a "deceased" alert on their credit reports. Also request a copy of credit reports.
  5. If there is a surviving spouse or other joint account holders, ask creditors to remove the deceased's name from accounts. They may require a copy of the death certificate to do this, as well as permission from the survivor or other authorized account holders.
  6. Contact the following organizations as relevant.
  7. -   Social Security Administration
    -   Insurance companies (including auto, health, life)
    -   Veterans Administration
    -   Immigration Services
    -   Department of Motor Vehicles, whether the person had a driver's license or a state ID card. Transfer any vehicle registration papers to the new owners.
    -   Agencies involved because of professional licenses  (bar association, medical licenses, cosmetician, etc.)
    -   Membership programs (video rental, public library, fitness club, etc.)
This information appears in a 2014 article from   The Unfurnishers ,
and is used here with permission.

Have Questions?
We're happy to help answer any questions you have.

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