Here in the state of New Jersey, personal representatives are appointed by the surrogate court following the opening of a probate of a descendant’s estate. Personal representatives are responsible for settling and distributing the estate in accordance with any probated or applicable law of intestacy and in compliance with the best interests of the estate. When a descendant dies testate, meaning they died with a validly executed will, and they have named an executor of his or her estate, the court issues letters of testamentary authorizing him or her as the executor. When a descendant dies intestate, meaning that they died without a will or in some cases when a will does not name an executor, the court issues letters of administration authorizing another applicant or heir of that deceased’s estate who agrees with being the appointed administrator.
In order to transfer real property that is now in probate, the personal representative must have a personal representative’s deed to do so. A PR deed is a fiduciary instrument executed by a personal representative that conveys interest in real property from a descendant’s estate to a devisee heir or purchaser. In New Jersey, it is typical for the PR deed to include a covenant as to the grantor’s acts.
This means that the grantor of the property, in this case the personal representative, promises that they have done nothing to encumber the property and that they have not allowed any person or entity to obtain any legal rights which could affect the real property. If you have any other questions regarding personal representatives here in New Jersey, reach out to us directly.