Florida probate requires the estate of the deceased to pay creditors providing there is adequate funding in the estate to do so. Typically it is the Personal Representative who makes the payments to valid creditors however in Summary Administration bills can be paid by other persons. In Formal Administration of Probate the Personal Representative must look at eight (8) categories or classes of creditor claims to determine which creditor gets what payment. Each class of claims is paid in descending order before progressing to the next class.
Here in the State of Florida the Personal Representative of a formal probate administration must follow the statutes and pay claims in the following descending order:
(a) Class 1.-Costs and expenses of administration, and compensation of personal representatives and their attorneys.
(b) Class 2.–Reasonable funeral, interment, and grave marker expenses, not to exceed the aggregate of $6,000.
(c) Class 3.–Debts and taxes with preference under federal law and claims in favor of the state for unpaid court costs, fees, or fines.
(d) Class 4.–Reasonable and necessary medical and hospital expenses of the last 60 days of the last illness of the decedent, including compensation of persons attending the decedent.
(e) Class 5.–Family allowance; not to exceed $18,000.
(f) Class 6.–Arrearage from court-ordered child support.
(g) Class 7.–Debts acquired after death by the continuation of the decedent’s business but only to the extent of the assets of that business.
(h) Class 8.–All other claims, including those founded on judgments or decrees rendered against the decedent during the decedent’s lifetime.
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Mario, Gunde Peters, Rhoden & Kelley has been serving this area for over 40 years, since 1976. Let our experience and knowledge assist you with your probate matter.