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Your Estate is not subject to the Probate process IF....Property Passes to a Surviving Spouse

    Depending on the circumstances, your friends, family and loved ones may not have to go through the probate process in order to determine what happens to your property. In California, upon the death of a spouse, half of the community property belongs to the surviving spouse and half is subject to testamentary disposition.
     However, if the decedent (person who dies) devises half their property to their surviving spouse, or does not have a will, than their half of community property will pass to the surviving spouse. California defines community property as "All property acquired during marriage and before separation, other than by gift or inheritance." (California Family Code § 770(a)(2).)  However, a devise to a surviving spouse that is conditioned on their survival is not considered a qualified ownership interest pursuant to California Probate Code 13501(c). Therefore you should consult with an experienced Los Angeles probate attorney to ensure that your will is drafted properly.
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