What Is Affidavit of Heirship?

By Mike Ludwig
What Is Affidavit of Heirship?

old book-keeping document image by Andrii Oleksiienko from Fotolia.com

An affidavit of heirship is a legal document used to establish the heirs of a deceased person.

Heirship

Heirs are the children, family members, friends or associates legally entitled to the property of a deceased person.

Affidavit of Heirship

An affidavit of heirship is commonly used to establish ownership of property, usually land, in cases when the deceased did not leave a will and the affidavit may be filed with the deed records of the county in which the property lies.

Example

If the daughter of a deceased farmer wants to sell her father's farmland but no will was left by the deceased, then the daughter would file an affidavit of heirship with the deed to the land.

Probate Court

Probate code and court deals with legal questions of the estate and property of deceased persons. An affidavit of heirship is often used as an alternative to probate.

Filing and Affidavit of Heirship

In most states, an affidavit of heirship must be witnessed by one or two people who knew the deceased but who do not stand to benefit from the estate. The heirs and witnesses must be able to verify when the deceased died and that the deceased has no outstanding debts. A notary public must be present.

About the Author

Mike Ludwig is a freelance writer and journalist in the United States. He has worked as a freelance newspaper reporter, section editor and magazine feature writer. Ludwig has three years of freelance writing experience, and has been published in "Southeast Ohio Magazine," InTheFray.com and the alternative bi-weekly paper "The Athens NEWS."