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Estates, Guardianships, Conservatorships and Trusts: S

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SCAO

An abbreviation for the State Court Administrative Office. 

Service or "to serve"

To deliver documents to an interested person according to Michigan Court Rule 5.105. See Proof of Service.

Small Estate

The court will use the term "small estate" to define a certain type of estate which is commenced by a Petition and Order for Assignment (PC 556). The value of the assets must not exceed a certain dollar amount. That value varies depending on the year of death. That amount is $15,000 if the decedent died before 2001; for dates of death in 2014, the amount is $22,000.

If the date of death value of decedent's property minus the funeral and burial expenses is less than the above value, it may qualify as a small estate. 

See Disposition of Small Estates (Brochure #3) for more information.

Special Fiduciary

A person appointed by the court to perform specific and limited duties on behalf of an estate or protected individual.

Statement and Proof of Claim

See Claim.

Summary Proceeding, Small Estates

Unsupervised estates may qualify for a shortened form of administration called "summary proceedings" if the total value of a decedents property is below the statutory limits requiring payment for homestead allowance, family allowance, and exempt property.  (See Disposition of Small Estates  for more information and values of the allowances and exempt property by reference to the year of death).

Supervised Administration or Supervised Estate

A type of procedure used in estate administration and settlement. Under supervised administration, the personal representative must file additional papers with the court (as opposed to unsupervised administration) such as the inventory, annual accounts and several notices. The personal representative must also ask for court approval before distributions may be made. When an estate is supervised, the suffix of the file number will be a "DA," such as 2002-123456 DA.