Is Texas Probate Required? (when my spouse dies)
“Do I have to probate the will of my spouse?” Texas attorneys all are asked this question. The simple answer is ‘maybe'.
You may not have to go through probate now. IF You can continue to use the accounts, live in the house, pay the bills, pay any taxes, etc… Your life, though more difficult without the deceased, will continue much as before. However, because several of the things that you probably do have, including primarily those things that are titled (i.e. car, house…) will eventually need to be sold, refinanced, or used as collateral, whether by you or by your heirs, there will come a day the deceased's interest must be dealt with. That process can be done now or can be left to your heirs/children. Their situation will be more difficult if there have been more than 4 years that have passed since the death of your spouse. In fact, you could very well face those same problems if more than four years have passed and you need to sell your car or your house that has someone else's name on title.
In my opinion, for most couples, probating the will immediately is the better choice.