The Probate Process in Oregon

Update: We've added some diagrams to make it easier to understand how property is inherited when there is no will in Oregon.

This is a general overview of the probate process in Oregon.  Your situation will undoubtedly vary but this will give you a good overview of what to expect.    

Although the below list seems simple, probate must take at least 5 months but is more typically a 9 to 12 month process in Oregon.  Without litigation or a will contest, an estate in Oregon can be administered in 9 steps.

  1. Appointment of the Personal Representative.  The Executor of the will or any interested party may petition for the appointment of a Personal Representative and the probate of the will. 
  2. Proving the Will.  This is the process of convincing the court that will is authentic.  ORS 113.055
  3. Notification of Heirs and known parties.  As part of the process, the PR must file a list of names of potential heirs and other interested parties and mail notice to them.  The PR has 30 days after appointment to file proof with the court that these parties received notice or were mailed. ORS 113.145 and ORS 113.035 (8) and (9)
  4. Inventory and Assessment of the Estate.  Within 60 days of appointment, the PR must file with the court an inventory and estimates of cash value for the property of the estate.  ORS 113.165
  5. Notification of Unknown interested parties.  Legal Notice must be published in a local newspaper for 3 consecutive weeks.  ORS 113.155(1)
  6. Filing of Claims against the Estate.  Creditors have 30 days after notice is mailed to them to file a claim against the estate.  Otherwise, other claims against the estate must be filed 4 months after the publication in the newspaper.  Those claims which were not filed on time could potentially be barred.  ORS 115
  7. Filing of Tax Returns and payment of any taxes. 
  8. File for approval of final accounts.  The PR must maintain and provide an accounting to the court before the distribution of assets of the estate. ORS 116.083(3)
  9. Court Approval.  Assets are distributed to the heirs and interested parties.  ORS 116.113

Although the steps above might seem simple, probate can be a confusing and time sensitive process.  If you are probating an estate, I suggest that you contact us.  

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Portland Probate Attorney
(503) 893-5878