HB 1226 - Wills, trusts, and estates; amend to add certain short titles

First Reader Summary

A BILL to amend Chapter 1 of Title 53 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to general provisions relative to wills, trusts, and estates, as such chapter and title were effective December 31, 1997, and Chapter 1 of Title 53 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to general provisions relative to wills, trusts, and estates, as such chapter and title were amended by an Act approved April 2, 1996; and for other purposes.

Martin, Jim (47th) Allen, Ben (117th) Hecht, Greg K (97th)
Teper, Doug (61st) Tolbert, Scott (25th) Wiles, John J (34th)
Status Summary HC: Judy SC: SJUD LA: 04/23/98 Signed by Governor
Page Numbers - 1/ 2/ 3/ 4/ 5/ 6/ 7/ 8/ 9/ 10/ 11/ 12/ 13/ 14/ 15/ 16/ 17/ 18/ 19/ 20/ 21/ 22/ 23/ 24/ 25/ 26/ 27/ 28/ 29/ 30/ 31/ 32/ 33
Code Sections - 15-9-86/ 15-9-86.1/ 15-9-87/ 53-1-1/ 53-1-1/ 53-1-2/ 53-3-4/ 53-4-44/ 53-4-46/ 53-5-40/ 53-6-1/ 53-6-15/ 53-6-20/ 53-6-31/ 53-6-61/ 53-7-30/ 53-7-33/ 53-7-41/ 53-7-45/ 53-7-50/ 53-7-51/ 53-7-68/ 53-7-69/ 53-7-74/ 53-9-14
House Action Senate
1/14/98 Read 1st Time 2/12/98
1/15/98 Read 2nd Time 3/5/98
2/2/98 Favorably Reported 3/3/98
Sub Committee Amend/Sub Sub
2/11/98 Read 3rd Time 3/12/98
2/11/98 Passed/Adopted 3/12/98
CS Comm/Floor Amend/Sub CS
3/19/98 Amend/Sub Agreed To 3/19/98
4/7/98 Sent to Governor
4/23/98 Signed by Governor
987 Act/Veto Number
7/1/98 Effective Date

HB 1226                                            HB 1226/AP 
 
      H. B. No. 1226 (AS PASSED HOUSE AND SENATE) 
      By:  Representatives Martin of the 47th, Allen of the 117th, 
      Hecht of the 97th, Teper of the 61st, Tolbert of the 25th 
      and others 
 
                        A BILL TO BE ENTITLED 
                               AN ACT 
 
 
  1- 1  To amend Article 4 of Chapter 9 of Title 15 of the Official 
  1- 2  Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to time, place, and 
  1- 3  procedure relating to probate courts, so as to change the 
  1- 4  provisions relating to applications to judges of probate 
  1- 5  courts for the granting of orders; to change the provisions 
  1- 6  relating to notice and service; to change the provisions 
  1- 7  relating to statements in lieu of stating time of hearing in 
  1- 8  certain types of proceedings; to change the provisions 
  1- 9  relating to contents of orders; to change provisions 
  1-10  relating to applicability; to amend Chapter 1 of Title 53 of 
  1-11  the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to general 
  1-12  provisions relative to wills, trusts, and estates, as such 
  1-13  chapter and title were in effect on December 31, 1997, so as 
  1-14  to provide for a short title; to amend Title 53 of the 
  1-15  Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to wills, 
  1-16  trusts, and estates, as such title was amended by an Act 
  1-17  approved April 2, 1996 (Ga. L. 1996, p. 504), and an Act 
  1-18  approved April 29, 1997 (Ga. L. 1997, p. 1352), so as to 
  1-19  provide for a short title; to revise certain definitions; to 
  1-20  change the provisions relating to renouncing succession; to 
  1-21  provide that an administrator with the will annexed is not 
  1-22  an executor; to change the provisions relating to the rules 
  1-23  of inheritance when a decedent dies without a will; to 
  1-24  change the provisions relating to vesting of title to 
  1-25  property; to change the conditions under which an heir may 
  1-26  petition for an order that no administration is necessary; 
  1-27  to provide for a final return and grant of a petition for 
  1-28  discharge before terminating an estate in the event of 
  1-29  escheat; to limit certain provisions relative to taxes and 
  1-30  liens for taxes against property set apart for year's 
  1-31  support to real property; to change a provision relating to 
  1-32  who may petition for year's support; to provide that no 
  1-33  additional guardian ad litem shall be appointed for a minor 
  1-34  child represented by a guardian petitioning for year's 
  1-35  support; to provide for exceptions; to limit to real 
  1-36  property a requirement for mailing a copy of a petition for 
  1-37  year's support to the tax commissioner or collector of a 
 
 
 
                                 -1- 
 
 
 
  2- 1  county in which certain property is located; to provide for 
  2- 2  overcoming a presumption of intent to revoke; to change the 
  2- 3  provisions relating to presumption of intent to revoke a 
  2- 4  will; to provide that a copy of a will may be offered for 
  2- 5  probate in certain circumstances; to provide when a copy of 
  2- 6  a will may be offered for probate if the original will 
  2- 7  cannot be found; to change a provision relating to what 
  2- 8  persons should receive notice to beneficiaries under a 
  2- 9  purported will; to repeal a requirement for notice to 
  2-10  certain beneficiaries and heirs before any acts of ancillary 
  2-11  administration; to provide for eligibility to serve as a 
  2-12  temporary administrator; to provide for service of a 
  2-13  petition for letters of administration with the will annexed 
  2-14  upon nominated executors who have failed to qualify in a 
  2-15  specified circumstance; to provide for service of such a 
  2-16  petition on beneficiaries; to provide for judicial 
  2-17  determination as to whether administration by the executor 
  2-18  of a deceased executor best serves the interests of the 
  2-19  first estate; to provide for consent by the guardian of an 
  2-20  heir who is not sui juris to unanimous selection of an 
  2-21  administrator; to provide that notice is not required for 
  2-22  the grant of temporary letters of administration; to provide 
  2-23  that a temporary administrator shall have the power to 
  2-24  collect and preserve estate assets in certain circumstances; 
  2-25  to repeal provisions for alternative consent to waive bond 
  2-26  by a prospective personal representative and to grant 
  2-27  specified powers to a personal representative when an heir 
  2-28  who is not sui juris has no guardian; to provide for 
  2-29  additional bond upon conversion of real property into 
  2-30  personalty; to provide for notice as the court shall direct 
  2-31  of compensation of the personal representative for the 
  2-32  delivery of property in kind and of determining expenses to 
  2-33  be allowed a personal representative; to provide that it 
  2-34  shall not be necessary to mail a copy of the inventory to 
  2-35  any beneficiary or heir who is not sui juris or for the 
  2-36  court to appoint a guardian for such person; to change the 
  2-37  provisions relating to waiver of the right to receive the 
  2-38  inventory; to change the provisions relating to dispensing 
  2-39  with making an inventory and sending copies to the heirs or 
  2-40  beneficiaries; to change the provisions relating to notices 
  2-41  to creditors and the publication thereof; to change the 
  2-42  provisions relating to compromise of claims; to provide for 
  2-43  assignment of claims and payment of proceeds; to change the 
  2-44  provisions relating to petition by a personal representative 
  2-45  for discharge and citations; to repeal a provision requiring 
  2-46  an order to deposit unclaimed funds before granting 
 
 
                                 -2- 
 
 
 
  3- 1  discharge; to change the provisions relating to mailing of 
  3- 2  returns to heirs and beneficiaries and relieving personal 
  3- 3  representatives of the duty to file returns and send copies 
  3- 4  to heirs or beneficiaries; to change the time for filing 
  3- 5  objections to an intermediate report and service 
  3- 6  requirements; to provide for continuing a hearing until a 
  3- 7  date certain when objections are filed to the personal 
  3- 8  representative's report, actions, or accounting; to change 
  3- 9  the provisions relating to authorized investments and the 
  3-10  standard of care of a personal representatiave; to change 
  3-11  the provisions relating to passage of title to property of 
  3-12  an estate to heirs or beneficiaries; to provide that the 
  3-13  report of a conservator of the estate of a missing 
  3-14  individual shall include a recommendation for distribution; 
  3-15  to provide for certain dispositions by the conservator upon 
  3-16  the order of an appropriate court; to change the provisions 
  3-17  relating to proceedings in probate courts; to redefine the 
  3-18  term "guardian"; to provide for service on individuals who 
  3-19  are not sui juris; to change the provisions relating to 
  3-20  waiver or acknowledgment of service or notice and consent to 
  3-21  granting of relief or entry of an order; to change the 
  3-22  provisions relating to issuance of citation upon filing of a 
  3-23  petition; to change the provisions relating to contents of a 
  3-24  citation; to provide for related matters; to repeal 
  3-25  conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 
 
  3-26       BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA: 
 
  3-27                           SECTION 1. 
 
  3-28  Article 4 of Chapter 9 of Title 15 of the Official Code of 
  3-29  Georgia Annotated, relating to time, place, and procedure 
  3-30  relating to probate courts, is amended by striking Code 
  3-31  Section 15-9-86, relating to application to the judge of the 
  3-32  probate court for the granting of any order, petition, and 
  3-33  notice and service thereof, and inserting in its place the 
  3-34  following: 
 
  3-35    "15-9-86. 
 
  3-36    Every application made to the judge of the probate court 
  3-37    for the granting of any order shall be by petition in 
  3-38    writing, stating the ground of such application and the 
  3-39    order sought.  If Unless otherwise provided by law, if 
  3-40    notice of the application, other than by published 
  3-41    citation, is necessary under the law or in the judgment of 
  3-42    the judge of the probate court, the judge shall cause a 
  3-43    copy of the application, together with a notice of the 
 
 
                                 -3- 
 
 
 
  4- 1    time of hearing, to be served by the sheriff or some 
  4- 2    lawful officer upon the each party or parties to be 
  4- 3    notified, who resides in this state and to be mailed by 
  4- 4    registered or certified mail to each party who resides 
  4- 5    outside this state at a known address, at least ten days, 
  4- 6    plus three days if mailed, before the hearing; an .  An 
  4- 7    entry of such service shall be made on the original.  In 
  4- 8    extraordinary cases, where it is necessary to act before 
  4- 9    such notice can be given, the judge of the probate court 
  4-10    shall so direct the proceedings as to make no final order 
  4-11    until notice has been given." 
 
  4-12                           SECTION 2. 
 
  4-13  Said article is further amended by striking Code Section 
  4-14  15-9-86.1, relating to statements in lieu of stating time of 
  4-15  hearing in certain types of proceedings, and inserting in 
  4-16  its place the following: 
 
  4-17    "15-9-86.1. 
 
  4-18    (a) In any of the proceedings specified in this Code 
  4-19    section with respect to which no citation is required to 
  4-20    be published, notice of an application to the judge of the 
  4-21    probate court for the granting of an order may, instead of 
  4-22    stating the time of the hearing as provided in Code 
  4-23    Section 15-9-86 and other specific laws, state that the 
  4-24    party served must file with the court his or her response 
  4-25    to the petition within ten days after the personal service 
  4-26    of the notice upon him or her, or 13 days after mailing if 
  4-27    served by mail, and that if no responses are filed the 
  4-28    petition will be granted without a hearing. 
 
  4-29    (b) If the specific laws governing a particular proceeding 
  4-30    subject to this Code section require that a citation be 
  4-31    published, or published and mailed, and also be served 
  4-32    personally upon one or more parties, such citation may, 
  4-33    instead of stating the time of hearing, state that:  
 
  4-34      (1) Any any party who is not ordered to be served 
  4-35      personally or by mail must file with the court his or 
  4-36      her response to the petition on or prior to a date 
  4-37      certain, which shall be a date for which a hearing could 
  4-38      be set according to the laws governing the particular 
  4-39      proceeding; and.  
 
  4-40      (2) Any party who is served personally must file with 
  4-41      the court his response by the later of the date certain 
 
 
 
 
                                 -4- 
 
 
 
  5- 1      established as provided above or the tenth day after the 
  5- 2      service of the notice upon him. 
 
  5- 3    (c) The citation or the caption of the citation shall 
  5- 4    identify all parties upon whom personal service has been 
  5- 5    ordered whose names are known.  
 
  5- 6    (c) Failure of a party served as provided in subsection 
  5- 7    (a) or (b) of this Code section to file with the court his 
  5- 8    or her response to a petition within the time required for 
  5- 9    his or her response shall constitute a waiver of the right 
  5-10    of such party to object to the petition and a waiver of 
  5-11    any right of such party to receive notice of any further 
  5-12    proceedings with respect to such petition. 
 
  5-13    (d) If no party serves a response to the petition, the 
  5-14    judge of the probate court may grant the petition without 
  5-15    a hearing.  If a response is filed, the judge of the 
  5-16    probate court shall set the matter for hearing and shall 
  5-17    by regular first-class mail send a notice of the time of 
  5-18    hearing to the petitioner and all parties who have served 
  5-19    responses at the addresses given by them in their 
  5-20    pleadings. 
 
  5-21    (e) The proceedings to which this Code section shall apply 
  5-22    are: 
 
  5-23      (1) Proceedings for sale, lease, exchange, or 
  5-24      encumbrance of a ward's property, as provided in Code 
  5-25      Section 29-2-4 or 29-2-7; 
 
  5-26      (2) Proceedings for citation of a guardian for failure 
  5-27      to make returns, as provided in Code Section 29-2-44; 
 
  5-28      (3) Proceedings involving waste or mismanagement by a 
  5-29      guardian, as provided in Code Section 29-2-45; 
 
  5-30      (4) Proceedings for discharge of a surety on a 
  5-31      guardian's bond, as provided in Code Section 29-2-52; 
 
  5-32      (5) Proceedings for resignation of trust by a guardian, 
  5-33      as provided in Code Section 29-2-72; 
 
  5-34      (6) Proceedings for resignation by a guardian whose ward 
  5-35      has removed to a different county, as provided in Code 
  5-36      Section 29-2-73; 
 
  5-37      (7) Proceedings for settlement of accounts of a 
  5-38      guardian, as provided in Code Section 29-2-76; 
 
  5-39      (8) Proceedings for appointment of a guardian of a 
  5-40      minor, as provided in Code Section 29-4-10; 
 
 
                                 -5- 
 
 
 
  6- 1      (9) Proceedings for requiring a guardian to give 
  6- 2      additional bond, as provided in Code Section 29-4-14; 
 
  6- 3      (10) Proceedings for appointment of a guardian for a 
  6- 4      beneficiary of the United States Department of Veterans 
  6- 5      Affairs, as provided in Code Section 29-6-5;  
 
  6- 6      (11) Proceedings for probate in solemn form, as provided 
  6- 7      in Code Section 53-3-14;  
 
  6- 8      (12) Proceedings for probate of a nuncupative will, as 
  6- 9      provided in Code Section 53-3-17; 
 
  6-10      (13)(11) Proceedings for determination of heirs at law, 
  6-11      as provided in Code Sections 53-4-30, et seq. of the 
  6-12      'Pre-1998 Probate Code'; and 
 
  6-13      (14)(12) Proceedings for setting aside year's support, 
  6-14      as provided in Code Section 53-5-8; of the 'Pre-1998 
  6-15      Probate Code.'  
 
  6-16      (15) Proceedings for conveyance or encumbrance of year's 
  6-17      support property, as provided in Code Section 53-5-21;  
 
  6-18      (16) Proceedings for granting of administration with the 
  6-19      will annexed, as provided in Code Section 53-6-29;  
 
  6-20      (17) Proceedings to require additional security of a 
  6-21      county guardian, as provided in Code Section 53-6-99;  
 
  6-22      (18) Proceedings for removal, settlement, or accounting 
  6-23      upon the part of an administrator, executor, or guardian 
  6-24      who has removed from the state, as provided in Code 
  6-25      Section 53-6-126;  
 
  6-26      (19) Proceedings to require an administrator to give 
  6-27      bond or security, as provided in Code Section 53-7-37;  
 
  6-28      (20) Proceedings involving waste or mismanagement by an 
  6-29      executor or administrator, as provided in Code Section 
  6-30      53-7-148;  
 
  6-31      (21) Proceedings for resignation of trust by an 
  6-32      administrator or executor, as provided in Code Section 
  6-33      53-7-149;  
 
  6-34      (22) Proceedings for accounting and settlement upon the 
  6-35      part of a removed administrator or executor, as provided 
  6-36      in Code Section 53-7-167;  
 
  6-37      (23) Proceedings for citation of an administrator or 
  6-38      executor for failure to make returns, as provided in 
  6-39      Code Section 53-7-183;  
 
 
                                 -6- 
 
 
 
  7- 1      (24) Proceedings for intermediate final accounting, as 
  7- 2      provided in Code Section 53-7-184; and  
 
  7- 3      (25) Proceedings for private sale of estate property, as 
  7- 4      provided in Code Section 53-8-34." 
 
  7- 5                           SECTION 3. 
 
  7- 6  Said article is further amended by striking Code Section 
  7- 7  15-9-87, relating to contents of orders, and inserting in 
  7- 8  its place the following: 
 
  7- 9    "15-9-87. 
 
  7-10    The order of the judge of the probate court or other 
  7-11    documents in the record shall always recite the names of 
  7-12    the persons so notified and shall reflect compliance with 
  7-13    the provisions required." 
 
  7-14                           SECTION 4. 
 
  7-15  Chapter 1 of Title 53 of the Official Code of Georgia 
  7-16  Annotated, relating to general provisions relative to wills, 
  7-17  trusts, and estates, as such chapter and title were in 
  7-18  effect on December 31, 1997, is amended by striking in its 
  7-19  entirety Code Section 53-1-1, relating to the abolition of 
  7-20  dower, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
  7-21    "53-1-1. 
 
  7-22    (a) This chapter and Chapters 2 through 11 of this title, 
  7-23    as such chapters existed on December 31, 1997, and as such 
  7-24    chapters shall be  expressly amended in the future, shall 
  7-25    be known and may be cited as the 'Pre-1998 Probate Code.' 
 
  7-26    (b) The right of dower is abolished." 
 
  7-27                           SECTION 5. 
 
  7-28  Title 53 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating 
  7-29  to wills, trusts, and estates, as such title was amended by 
  7-30  an Act approved April 2, 1996 (Ga. L. 1996, p. 504), and an 
  7-31  Act approved April 29, 1997 (Ga. L. 1997, p. 1352), and as 
  7-32  such title, as amended by such Acts, may be amended in the 
  7-33  future, is amended by striking in its entirety Code Section 
  7-34  53-1-1, relating to the effective date, and inserting in 
  7-35  lieu thereof the following: 
 
  7-36    "53-1-1. 
 
  7-37    (a) This chapter and Chapters 2 through 11 of this title, 
  7-38    as such chapters were amended by an Act approved April 2, 
  7-39    1996 (Ga. L. 1996,  p. 504), and an Act approved April 29, 
 
 
                                 -7- 
 
 
 
  8- 1    1997 (Ga. L. 1997, p. 1352), and as such chapters may be 
  8- 2    amended in the future, shall be known and may be cited as 
  8- 3    the 'Revised Probate Code of 1998.' 
 
  8- 4    (b) Except as otherwise provided by law, the provisions 
  8- 5    contained in this chapter and Chapters 2 through 11 of 
  8- 6    this title shall be  effective on January 1, 1998; 
  8- 7    provided, however, that no vested rights of title, year's 
  8- 8    support, succession, or inheritance shall be impaired." 
 
  8- 9                           SECTION 6. 
 
  8-10  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
  8-11  53-1-2 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
  8-12  definitions, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
  8-13    "53-1-2. 
 
  8-14    As used in this chapter and Chapters 2 through 11 of this 
  8-15    title, the term: 
 
  8-16      (1) 'Administrator' means any person appointed and 
  8-17      qualified to administer an intestate estate, including 
  8-18      an intestate estate already partially administered by an 
  8-19      administrator and from any cause unrepresented. 
 
  8-20      (2) 'Administrator with the will annexed' means any 
  8-21      person, other than an executor, appointed and qualified 
  8-22      to administer a testate estate, including a testate 
  8-23      estate already partially administered and from any cause 
  8-24      unrepresented. 
 
  8-25      (3) 'Beneficiary' means a person, including a trust, who 
  8-26      is designated in a will to take an interest in real or 
  8-27      personal property. 
 
  8-28      (4) 'Codicil' means an amendment to or republication of 
  8-29      a will. 
 
  8-30      (5) 'County administrator' means any individual or 
  8-31      individuals appointed by the probate court of the county 
  8-32      and qualified to represent an estate that is 
  8-33      unrepresented and unlikely to be represented. 
 
  8-34      (6) 'Descendants' means the lineal descendants of an 
  8-35      individual including those individuals who are treated 
  8-36      as lineal descendants by virtue of adoption. 
 
  8-37      (7) 'Executor' means any person nominated in a will who 
  8-38      has qualified to administer a testate estate, including 
  8-39      a person nominated as alternative or successor executor. 
 
 
 
                                 -8- 
 
 
 
  9- 1      (8) 'Guardian' means the guardian ad litem or 
  9- 2      representative described in Code Section 53-11-2 who 
  9- 3      represents one or more parties to a probate court 
  9- 4      proceeding who are not sui juris, are unborn, or are 
  9- 5      unknown. 
 
  9- 6      (9) 'Heirs' means those one or more individuals who 
  9- 7      survive the decedent and are determined under the rules 
  9- 8      of inheritance to take the property of the decedent that 
  9- 9      is not disposed of by will. 
 
  9-10      (10) 'Nominated executor' means any person nominated in 
  9-11      the will to serve as executor who has not yet qualified 
  9-12      to serve as executor. 
 
  9-13      (11) 'Person' means an individual, corporation, 
  9-14      partnership, association, joint-stock company, business 
  9-15      trust, unincorporated organization, limited liability 
  9-16      company, or two or more persons having a joint or common 
  9-17      interest, including an individual or a business entity 
  9-18      acting as a personal representative or in any other 
  9-19      fiduciary capacity. 
 
  9-20      (12) 'Personal representative' means any administrator, 
  9-21      administrator with the will annexed, county 
  9-22      administrator, or executor. 
 
  9-23      (13) 'Qualified' means that a personal representative 
  9-24      has taken the oath, posted any required bond, and been 
  9-25      issued letters of administration or letters 
  9-26      testamentary, and posted any required bond, as provided 
  9-27      in this title. 
 
  9-28      (14) 'Sui juris' means an individual is age 18 or over 
  9-29      and not suffering from any legal disability. 
 
  9-30      (15) 'Temporary administrator' means any person granted 
  9-31      temporary letters of administration upon an 
  9-32      unrepresented estate. 
 
  9-33      (16) 'Testamentary gift' means the interest in real or 
  9-34      personal property which a beneficiary is designated to 
  9-35      take in a will. 
 
  9-36      (17) 'Will' means the legal declaration of an 
  9-37      individual's testamentary intention regarding that 
  9-38      individual's property or other matters.  Will includes 
  9-39      the will and all codicils to the will." 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -9- 
 
 
 
 10- 1                           SECTION 7. 
 
 10- 2  Said title is further amended by striking paragraph (1) of 
 10- 3  subsection (f) of Code Section 53-1-20 of the "Revised 
 10- 4  Probate Code of 1998," relating to renouncing succession, 
 10- 5  and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 10- 6      "(f)(1) Except as otherwise provided by the will or 
 10- 7      other governing instrument, a renunciation shall cause 
 10- 8      the renounced property to pass as if the person 
 10- 9      renouncing had predeceased the decedent or, in the case 
 10-10      of property passing upon exercise of a power of 
 10-11      appointment, as if the person renouncing had predeceased 
 10-12      the holder of the power; provided, however, that, solely 
 10-13      for the purposes of the last clause of paragraph (5) and 
 10-14      the last clause of paragraph (7) of subsection (b) of 
 10-15      Code Section 53-2-1, any individual renouncing who is 
 10-16      the only sibling or the only aunt or uncle surviving the 
 10-17      decedent shall not be deemed to have predeceased the 
 10-18      decedent." 
 
 10-19                           SECTION 8. 
 
 10-20  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 10-21  Code Section 53-2-1 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 10-22  relating to rules of inheritance when a decedent dies 
 10-23  without a will, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 10-24    "(b) When a decedent died without a will, the following 
 10-25    rules shall determine such decedent's heirs: 
 
 10-26      (1) Upon the death of an individual who is survived by a 
 10-27      spouse but not by any child or other descendant, the 
 10-28      spouse is the sole heir. If the decedent is also 
 10-29      survived by any child or other descendant, the spouse 
 10-30      shall share equally with the children, with the 
 10-31      descendants of any deceased child taking that child's 
 10-32      share, per stirpes; provided, however, that the spouse's 
 10-33      portion shall not be less than a one-third share; 
 
 10-34      (2) If the decedent is not survived by a spouse, the 
 10-35      heirs shall be those relatives, as provided in this Code 
 10-36      section, who are in the nearest degree to the decedent 
 10-37      in which there is any survivor; 
 
 10-38      (3) Children of the decedent are in the first degree, 
 10-39      and those who survive the decedent shall share the 
 10-40      estate equally, with the descendants of any deceased 
 10-41      child taking, per stirpes, the share that child would 
 10-42      have taken if in life; 
 
 
                                 -10- 
 
 
 
 11- 1      (4) Parents of the decedent are in the second degree, 
 11- 2      and those who survive the decedent shall share the 
 11- 3      estate equally; 
 
 11- 4      (5) Siblings of the decedent are in the third degree, 
 11- 5      and those who survive the decedent shall share the 
 11- 6      estate equally, with the descendants of any deceased 
 11- 7      sibling taking, per stirpes, the share that sibling 
 11- 8      would have taken if in life; provided, however, that, 
 11- 9      subject to the provisions of paragraph (1) of subsection 
 11-10      (f) of Code Section 53-1-20, if no sibling survives the 
 11-11      decedent, the nieces and nephews who survive the 
 11-12      decedent shall take the estate in equal shares, with the 
 11-13      descendants of any deceased niece or nephew taking, per 
 11-14      stirpes, the share that niece or nephew would have taken 
 11-15      if in life; 
 
 11-16      (6) Grandparents of the decedent are in the fourth 
 11-17      degree, and those who survive the decedent shall share 
 11-18      the estate equally; 
 
 11-19      (7) Uncles and aunts of the decedent are in the fifth 
 11-20      degree, and those who survive the decedent shall share 
 11-21      the estate equally, with the children of any deceased 
 11-22      uncle or aunt taking, per stirpes, the share that uncle 
 11-23      or aunt would have taken if in life; provided, however, 
 11-24      that, subject to the provisions of paragraph (1) of 
 11-25      subsection (f) of Code Section 53-1-20, if no uncle or 
 11-26      aunt of the decedent survives the decedent, the first 
 11-27      cousins who survive the decedent shall share the estate 
 11-28      equally; and 
 
 11-29      (8) The more remote degrees of kinship shall be 
 11-30      determined by counting the number of steps in the chain 
 11-31      from the relative to the closest common ancestor of the 
 11-32      relative and decedent and the number of steps in the 
 11-33      chain from the common ancestor to the decedent.  The sum 
 11-34      of the steps in the two chains shall be the degree of 
 11-35      kinship, and the surviving relatives with the lowest sum 
 11-36      shall be in the nearest degree and shall share the 
 11-37      estate equally." 
 
 11-38                           SECTION 9. 
 
 11-39  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 11-40  Code Section 53-2-7 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 11-41  relating to vesting of title to property and the right to 
 11-42  possession, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 
 
                                 -11- 
 
 
 
 12- 1    "(b) If no administrator is appointed within five three 
 12- 2    years after the death of an intestate, the title to all 
 12- 3    property owned by the decedent, both real and personal, 
 12- 4    shall vest in the decedent's heirs and shall be deemed to 
 12- 5    have become vested in them as of the date of the 
 12- 6    decedent's death." 
 
 12- 7                          SECTION 10. 
 
 12- 8  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 12- 9  Code Section 53-2-40 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 12-10  relating to petitions, and inserting in its place the 
 12-11  following: 
 
 12-12    "(a) When an individual has died intestate and there has 
 12-13    been no administration personal representative appointed 
 12-14    in this state, any heir of the decedent may file a 
 12-15    petition praying for an order that no administration is 
 12-16    necessary. The petition shall be filed in the probate 
 12-17    court of the county of the domicile of the decedent, if 
 12-18    the decedent was domiciled in this state, or in the county 
 12-19    in which real property is located, if the decedent was not 
 12-20    domiciled in this state." 
 
 12-21                          SECTION 11. 
 
 12-22  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (e) of 
 12-23  Code Section 53-2-51 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 12-24  relating to procedure for escheat, and inserting in its 
 12-25  place the following: 
 
 12-26    "(e) When property is paid over or distributed to a county 
 12-27    board of education, no further proceedings to terminate 
 12-28    the administration of the estate shall be necessary 
 12-29    terminated following a final return and the granting of a 
 12-30    petition for discharge." 
 
 12-31                          SECTION 12. 
 
 12-32  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 12-33  53-3-4 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 12-34  taxes and tax liens, and inserting in its place the 
 12-35  following: 
 
 12-36    "53-3-4. 
 
 12-37    In solvent and insolvent estates, all taxes and liens for 
 12-38    taxes accrued for years prior to the year of the 
 12-39    decedent's death against the real property set apart and 
 12-40    against any equity of redemption applicable to the real 
 12-41    property set apart shall be divested as if the entire 
 
 
                                 -12- 
 
 
 
 13- 1    title were included in the year's support. Additionally, 
 13- 2    as elected in the petition, property taxes accrued in the 
 13- 3    year of the decedent's death or in the year in which the 
 13- 4    petition for year's support is filed or, if the petition 
 13- 5    is filed in the year of the decedent's death, in the year 
 13- 6    following the filing of the petition, shall be divested if 
 13- 7    the real property is set apart for year's support." 
 
 13- 8                          SECTION 13. 
 
 13- 9  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 13-10  Code Section 53-3-5 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 13-11  relating to the filing of a petition for year's support, and 
 13-12  inserting in its place the following: 
 
 13-13    "(a) Upon the death of any individual leaving an estate 
 13-14    solvent or insolvent, the surviving spouse or a minor 
 13-15    child or a guardian or other person acting in behalf of 
 13-16    the surviving spouse or in behalf of a minor child may 
 13-17    file a petition for year's support in the probate court 
 13-18    having jurisdiction over the decedent's estate.  If the 
 13-19    petition is brought by a guardian acting on behalf of a 
 13-20    minor child, no additional guardian ad litem shall be 
 13-21    appointed for such minor child unless ordered by the 
 13-22    court." 
 
 13-23                          SECTION 14. 
 
 13-24  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (d) of 
 13-25  Code Section 53-3-6 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 13-26  relating to issuance of citation and publication of notice 
 13-27  and mailing of petitions to tax commissioners, and inserting 
 13-28  in its place the following: 
 
 13-29    "(d) The probate court shall mail a copy of the petition 
 13-30    within five days of its filing to the tax commissioner or 
 13-31    tax collector of any county in this state in which real 
 13-32    property proposed to be set apart is located." 
 
 13-33                          SECTION 15. 
 
 13-34  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 13-35  53-4-44 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 13-36  destruction or obliteration of a will or material portion 
 13-37  thereof, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 13-38    "53-4-44. 
 
 13-39    An express revocation may be effected by any destruction 
 13-40    or obliteration of the will done by the testator with an 
 13-41    intent to revoke or by another at the testator's 
 
 
                                 -13- 
 
 
 
 14- 1    direction.  The intent to revoke shall be presumed from 
 14- 2    the obliteration or cancellation of a material portion of 
 14- 3    the will, but such presumption may be overcome by a 
 14- 4    preponderance of the evidence." 
 
 14- 5                          SECTION 16. 
 
 14- 6  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 14- 7  53-4-46 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 14- 8  presumption of intent, and inserting in its place the 
 14- 9  following: 
 
 14-10    "53-4-46. 
 
 14-11    (a) A presumption of intent to revoke arises if the 
 14-12    original of a testator's will cannot be found to probate; 
 14-13    which presumption may be overcome by a preponderance of 
 14-14    the evidence and provided further a copy of said will may 
 14-15    be probated if the evidence shows that a lost will was not 
 14-16    intended to be revoked. 
 
 14-17    (b) A copy of a will may be offered for probate in 
 14-18    accordance with Chapter 5 of this title in lieu of the 
 14-19    original will if the original cannot be found to probate, 
 14-20    provided that the copy is proved by a preponderance of the 
 14-21    evidence to be a true copy of the original will and that 
 14-22    the presumption of intent to revoke set forth in 
 14-23    subsection (a) of this Code section is rebutted by a 
 14-24    preponderance of the evidence." 
 
 14-25                          SECTION 17. 
 
 14-26  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 14-27  Code Section 53-5-22 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 14-28  relating to notice for probate in solemn form, and inserting 
 14-29  in its place the following: 
 
 14-30    "(b) For purposes of giving notice to beneficiaries under 
 14-31    a purported will for which probate proceedings are pending 
 14-32    in this state, notice shall be given to those of the 
 14-33    following persons named or designated in the purported 
 14-34    will whose identity and whereabouts may be determined by 
 14-35    the petitioner in the exercise of reasonable diligence: 
 
 14-36      (1) Each beneficiary who is designated in the will to 
 14-37      receive a present interest or power, other than a mere 
 14-38      trust beneficiary, and who, in the case of an 
 14-39      individual, is sui juris Each beneficiary: 
 
 14-40        (A) Who has a present interest, including but not 
 14-41        limited to a vested remainder interest but not 
 
 
                                 -14- 
 
 
 
 15- 1        including trust beneficiaries where there is a 
 15- 2        trustee; and 
 
 15- 3        (B) Whose identity and whereabouts are known or may be 
 15- 4        determined by reasonable diligence; 
 
 15- 5      (2) The duly acting guardian or, if none, the person 
 15- 6      having custody of each individual beneficiary with a 
 15- 7      present interest or power, other than a mere trust 
 15- 8      beneficiary, who is not sui juris; and 
 
 15- 9      (3) Each trustee. 
 
 15-10    Notice shall not be required in the case of a person whose 
 15-11    interest, even though vested, cannot be possessed until 
 15-12    the passage of time or the happening of a contingency. 
 15-13    The probate court may, on motion, modify the notice 
 15-14    required in the case of numerous beneficiaries of the same 
 15-15    or similar class where the value of each testamentary gift 
 15-16    is, or appears to be, nominal. Upon motion, the court may 
 15-17    determine whether the interest of any beneficiary required 
 15-18    to be notified under this subsection is adequately 
 15-19    represented, including any contingent interest of a 
 15-20    beneficiary, and if such representation is found to be 
 15-21    inadequate, the court may appoint a guardian ad litem to 
 15-22    represent each beneficiary or order such other notice as 
 15-23    may be appropriate to a beneficiary of a contingent 
 15-24    interest.  If a trustee named in the will indicates a 
 15-25    refusal to represent the beneficiaries of the testamentary 
 15-26    trust, the court may order that notice be given directly 
 15-27    to the beneficiaries of the trust." 
 
 15-28                          SECTION 18. 
 
 15-29  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 15-30  53-5-40 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 15-31  notice given by an ancillary personal representative, and 
 15-32  inserting in its place the following: 
 
 15-33    "53-5-40. 
 
 15-34    Upon qualification, the ancillary personal representative 
 15-35    shall give notice to all creditors of the nondomiciliary 
 15-36    decedent who are domiciled in this state in the same 
 15-37    manner as is required for decedents who die domiciled in 
 15-38    this state. Following qualification and prior to 
 15-39    performing any acts of ancillary administration in this 
 15-40    state, the ancillary personal representative shall give 
 15-41    notice, in accordance with Chapter 11 of this title, of 
 15-42    the ancillary probate of the decedent's will or the 
 
 
                                 -15- 
 
 
 
 16- 1    ancillary administration of the decedent's estate to each 
 16- 2    beneficiary under the decedent's will who is domiciled in 
 16- 3    this state and to any heir of the decedent who is 
 16- 4    domiciled in this state." 
 
 16- 5                          SECTION 19. 
 
 16- 6  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 16- 7  53-6-1 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 16- 8  eligibility for service as a personal representative of a 
 16- 9  decedent, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 16-10    "53-6-1. 
 
 16-11    Any individual who is sui juris, regardless of citizenship 
 16-12    or residency, is eligible to serve as a personal 
 16-13    representative or temporary administrator of a decedent 
 16-14    who dies domiciled in this state, subject to the 
 16-15    requirements for qualification set forth in this chapter. 
 16-16    Any other person is eligible to serve as a personal 
 16-17    representative or temporary administrator of a decedent 
 16-18    who dies domiciled in this state, subject to the 
 16-19    requirements set forth in this chapter, provided the 
 16-20    person is otherwise qualified to act as a fiduciary in 
 16-21    this state." 
 
 16-22                          SECTION 20. 
 
 16-23  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 16-24  Code Section 53-6-11 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 16-25  relating to qualifications of executors, and inserting in 
 16-26  its place the following: 
 
 16-27    "(a) If the nominated executor does not qualify within 90 
 16-28    days after the order admitting the will to probate is 
 16-29    entered or is proved to be dead or incapacitated or 
 16-30    renounces the right to serve, the next nominated executor 
 16-31    in the order set out in the will may qualify. If the next 
 16-32    nominated executor fails to qualify within 90 days after 
 16-33    the expiration of the time period by which the first 
 16-34    nominated executor must qualify or is proved to be dead or 
 16-35    incapacitated or renounces the right to serve, any 
 16-36    nominated executor may qualify.  If no nominated executor 
 16-37    appears to qualify within a reasonable time or if there is 
 16-38    no other executor named in the will, the estate shall be 
 16-39    deemed to be unrepresented." 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -16- 
 
 
 
 17- 1                          SECTION 21. 
 
 17- 2  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 17- 3  53-6-15 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 17- 4  petitions for letters of administration with the will 
 17- 5  annexed, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 17- 6    "53-6-15. 
 
 17- 7    (a) Every petition for letters of administration with the 
 17- 8    will annexed shall be made in accordance with the 
 17- 9    procedures set forth in Code Section 53-5-21 if the will 
 17-10    has not yet been admitted to probate and shall include a 
 17-11    prayer for issuance of letters of administration with the 
 17-12    will annexed.  The petition shall set forth the names, 
 17-13    addresses, and ages or majority status of the 
 17-14    beneficiaries who are capable of expressing a choice, as 
 17-15    defined in subsection (a) of Code Section 53-6-14, and the 
 17-16    circumstances giving rise to the need for an administrator 
 17-17    with the will annexed.  The petition shall be served on 
 17-18    the beneficiaries of the will who are capable of 
 17-19    expressing a choice in the manner described in Chapter 11 
 17-20    of this title. If the petition for letters of 
 17-21    administration with the will annexed is based upon the 
 17-22    expiration of a reasonable time for any nominated executor 
 17-23    to qualify, any nominated executor who has failed to 
 17-24    qualify shall also be served. 
 
 17-25    (b) If the will has been admitted to probate, the petition 
 17-26    for letters of administration with the will annexed shall 
 17-27    set forth the names, addresses, and ages or majority 
 17-28    status of the beneficiaries who are capable of expressing 
 17-29    a choice, as described in subsection (a) of Code Section 
 17-30    53-6-14, the date on which the will was admitted to 
 17-31    probate, and the circumstances giving rise to the need for 
 17-32    an administrator with the will annexed.  The petition 
 17-33    shall be served on the beneficiaries of the will and the 
 17-34    executor, if any, of any deceased executor whose death 
 17-35    created the vacancy in the manner described in Chapter 11 
 17-36    of this title. 
 
 17-37    (c) In the case of an estate partially administered and 
 17-38    unrepresented because of the death of the previous 
 17-39    executor, the judge shall determine whether the interest 
 17-40    of the first estate and the persons interested in the 
 17-41    first estate will be best served by the appointment of an 
 17-42    administrator with the will annexed or by permitting the 
 17-43    executor, if any, appointed under the will of the deceased 
 
 
 
                                 -17- 
 
 
 
 18- 1    previous executor to be or become, as the case may be, the 
 18- 2    executor of the first estate by operation of law." 
 
 18- 3                          SECTION 22. 
 
 18- 4  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 18- 5  53-6-20 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 18- 6  selection or appointment of an administrator, and inserting 
 18- 7  in its place the following: 
 
 18- 8    "53-6-20. 
 
 18- 9    An administrator may be unanimously selected by all the 
 18-10    heirs of a deceased intestate unless the sole heir is the 
 18-11    decedent's surviving spouse and an action for divorce or 
 18-12    separate maintenance was pending between the deceased 
 18-13    intestate and the surviving spouse at the time of death. 
 18-14    With respect to any heir who is not sui juris, consent may 
 18-15    be given by the guardian of the individual. When no such 
 18-16    unanimous selection is made, the probate court shall make 
 18-17    the appointment that will best serve the interests of the 
 18-18    estate, considering the following order of preferences: 
 
 18-19      (1) The surviving spouse, unless an action for divorce 
 18-20      or separate maintenance was pending between the deceased 
 18-21      intestate and the surviving spouse at the time of death; 
 
 18-22      (2) One or more other heirs of the intestate or the 
 18-23      person selected by the majority in interest of them; 
 
 18-24      (3) Any other eligible person; 
 
 18-25      (4) Any creditor of the estate; or 
 
 18-26      (5) The county administrator." 
 
 18-27                          SECTION 23. 
 
 18-28  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 18-29  Code Section 53-6-30 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 18-30  relating to powers of the court to grant temporary letters 
 18-31  of administration and appoint an administrator and appeals, 
 18-32  and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 18-33    "(a) The probate court may at any time and without notice 
 18-34    grant temporary letters of administration on an 
 18-35    unrepresented estate to continue in full force and effect 
 18-36    until the temporary administrator is discharged or a 
 18-37    personal representative is appointed." 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -18- 
 
 
 
 19- 1                          SECTION 24. 
 
 19- 2  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 19- 3  53-6-31 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 19- 4  the powers of a temporary administrator, and inserting in 
 19- 5  its place the following: 
 
 19- 6    "53-6-31. 
 
 19- 7    A temporary administrator may bring an action for the 
 19- 8    collection of debts or for personal property of the 
 19- 9    decedent.  If a personal representative is appointed 
 19-10    pending the action, the personal representative may be 
 19-11    made a party in lieu of the temporary administrator.  A 
 19-12    temporary administrator shall have the power to collect 
 19-13    and preserve the assets of the estate and to expend funds 
 19-14    for this purpose if approved by the judge of the probate 
 19-15    court after such notice as the judge deems necessary." 
 
 19-16                          SECTION 25. 
 
 19-17  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (c) of 
 19-18  Code Section 53-6-50 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 19-19  relating to persons required to give bond, and inserting in 
 19-20  its place the following: 
 
 19-21    "(c) A person petitioning to qualify as a personal 
 19-22    representative of an intestate estate may be relieved from 
 19-23    the requirement for giving bond by the unanimous consent 
 19-24    of the heirs of the estate. With respect to any heir who 
 19-25    is not sui juris, consent may be given by the guardian of 
 19-26    the individual.  If there is no guardian, consent may be 
 19-27    given by either parent of a minor heir or by a majority in 
 19-28    interest of the heirs apparent of an incapacitated adult 
 19-29    heir. The personal representative of a deceased heir is 
 19-30    authorized to consent for that heir.  In no case may 
 19-31    consent on behalf of an heir who is not sui juris be 
 19-32    effective if the person consenting is the person 
 19-33    petitioning to serve as personal representative." 
 
 19-34                          SECTION 26. 
 
 19-35  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (c) of 
 19-36  Code Section 53-6-51 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 19-37  relating to requisites of bonds, and inserting in its place 
 19-38  the following: 
 
 19-39    "(c) The bond shall be in a sum equal to double the value 
 19-40    of the estate to be administered; provided, however, that 
 19-41    the bond shall be in an amount equal to the value of the 
 
 
 
                                 -19- 
 
 
 
 20- 1    estate if secured by a licensed commercial surety 
 20- 2    authorized to transact business in this state.  The value 
 20- 3    of the estate for purposes of the bond shall be determined 
 20- 4    without regard to the value of any real property or 
 20- 5    improvements thereon held by the personal representative 
 20- 6    or temporary administrator as fiduciary but, upon the 
 20- 7    conversion of the real property into personalty, a new 
 20- 8    bond shall be given based upon the value of the estate, 
 20- 9    including the value of the personalty into which the real 
 20-10    property was converted." 
 
 20-11                          SECTION 27. 
 
 20-12  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 20-13  Code Section 53-6-60 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 20-14  relating to the amount of compensation for a personal 
 20-15  representative, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 20-16    "(b) If the personal representative's compensation is not 
 20-17    specified in the will or any separate written agreement, 
 20-18    the personal representative for services rendered shall be 
 20-19    entitled to compensation equal to: 
 
 20-20      (1) Two and one-half percent commission on all sums of 
 20-21      money received by the personal representative on account 
 20-22      of the estate, except on money loaned by and repaid to 
 20-23      the personal representative, and 2 1/2 percent 
 20-24      commission on all sums paid out by the personal 
 20-25      representative, either for debts, legacies, or 
 20-26      distributive shares; 
 
 20-27      (2) Ten percent commission on the amount of interest 
 20-28      made if, during the course of administration, the 
 20-29      personal representative shall receive interest on money 
 20-30      loaned by the personal representative in that capacity 
 20-31      and shall include the same on the return to the probate 
 20-32      court so as to become chargeable therewith as a part of 
 20-33      the corpus of the estate; 
 
 20-34      (3) Reasonable compensation, as determined in the 
 20-35      discretion of the probate court and after such notice, 
 20-36      if any, as the court shall direct, for the delivery over 
 20-37      of property in kind, not exceeding 3 percent of the 
 20-38      appraised value and, in cases where there has been no 
 20-39      appraisal, not over 3 percent of the fair value as found 
 20-40      by the judge, irrespective of whether delivery over in 
 20-41      kind is made pursuant to proceedings for that purpose in 
 20-42      the probate court and irrespective of whether the 
 
 
 
                                 -20- 
 
 
 
 21- 1      property, except money, is tangible or intangible, 
 21- 2      personal or real; and 
 
 21- 3      (4) In the discretion of the probate court, compensation 
 21- 4      for working land for the benefit of the parties in 
 21- 5      interest in no case exceeding 10 percent of the annual 
 21- 6      income of the property so managed." 
 
 21- 7                          SECTION 28. 
 
 21- 8  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 21- 9  53-6-61 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 21-10  expenses of personal representatives, and inserting in its 
 21-11  place the following: 
 
 21-12    "53-6-61. 
 
 21-13    Personal representatives shall be allowed reasonable 
 21-14    expenses incurred in the administration of the estate, 
 21-15    including without limitation expenses for travel, the 
 21-16    expenses and premiums incurred in securing a bond, and the 
 21-17    expenses of counsel and other agents.  Such reasonable 
 21-18    expenses shall be determined after such notice, if any, as 
 21-19    the court shall direct." 
 
 21-20                          SECTION 29. 
 
 21-21  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 21-22  Code Section 53-7-1 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 21-23  relating to general powers and duties of personal 
 21-24  representatives and additional powers, and inserting in its 
 21-25  place the following: 
 
 21-26    "(b) As part of the petition for letters testamentary or 
 21-27    letters of administration or by separate petition, the 
 21-28    beneficiaries of a testate estate or the heirs of an 
 21-29    intestate estate may, by unanimous consent, authorize but 
 21-30    not require the probate court to grant to the personal 
 21-31    representative any of the powers contained in Code Section 
 21-32    53-12-232. With respect to any beneficiary or heir who is 
 21-33    not sui juris, the consent may be given by the guardian, 
 21-34    or, if none, by either parent in the case of a minor or by 
 21-35    a majority in interest of the heirs apparent in the case 
 21-36    of an incapacitated adult; provided, however, that such 
 21-37    consent on behalf of an individual who is not sui juris 
 21-38    shall not be effective when the only individual who is 
 21-39    consenting is the individual who will serve or who is 
 21-40    serving as the personal representative. The personal 
 21-41    representative of a deceased beneficiary or heir is 
 21-42    authorized to consent on behalf of that beneficiary or 
 
 
                                 -21- 
 
 
 
 22- 1    heir.  The grant of powers may only be ordered after 
 22- 2    publication of a citation and without any objection being 
 22- 3    filed. The citation shall be sufficient if it states 
 22- 4    generally that the petition requests that powers contained 
 22- 5    in Code Section 53-12-232 be granted." 
 
 22- 6                          SECTION 30. 
 
 22- 7  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 22- 8  53-7-30 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 22- 9  filing and contents of an inventory, and inserting in its 
 22-10  place the following: 
 
 22-11    "53-7-30. 
 
 22-12    Unless otherwise provided by will or relieved under Code 
 22-13    Section 53-7-32 or 53-7-33, the personal representative 
 22-14    shall prepare an inventory of all the property of the 
 22-15    decedent. The personal representative shall file the 
 22-16    inventory with the probate court and shall deliver a copy 
 22-17    of the inventory to the beneficiaries of a testate estate 
 22-18    or the heirs of an intestate estate by first-class mail 
 22-19    within six months after the qualification of the personal 
 22-20    representative. It shall not be necessary to mail a copy 
 22-21    of the inventory to any beneficiary or heir who is not sui 
 22-22    juris or for the court to appoint a guardian for such 
 22-23    person. The time for filing the inventory may be extended 
 22-24    by the probate court for good cause shown. The inventory 
 22-25    shall state that it contains a true statement of all the 
 22-26    property of the decedent within the knowledge of the 
 22-27    personal representative and shall be verified in the same 
 22-28    manner as a petition filed in the probate court. The 
 22-29    inventory shall state that the inventory has been mailed 
 22-30    to all beneficiaries or heirs who are entitled to receive 
 22-31    the inventory and shall provide the name of any 
 22-32    beneficiary or heir who has waived the right to receive 
 22-33    the inventory, as provided in Code Section 53-7-32." 
 
 22-34                          SECTION 31. 
 
 22-35  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 22-36  Code Section 53-7-32 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 22-37  relating to waiver of the right to receive the inventory and 
 22-38  relieving the personal representative of the duty to make 
 22-39  inventory, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 22-40    "(b) By unanimous written consent, the beneficiaries of a 
 22-41    testate estate or the heirs of an intestate estate may 
 22-42    authorize the probate court to relieve the personal 
 
 
 
                                 -22- 
 
 
 
 23- 1    representative of the duty to make inventory in the same 
 23- 2    manner as described in subsection (b) of Code Section 
 23- 3    53-7-1.  Any such unanimous written consent, regardless of 
 23- 4    the date of execution, which relieves the personal 
 23- 5    representative from making inventory shall also relieve 
 23- 6    the personal representative from sending a copy of the 
 23- 7    inventory to the heirs or beneficiaries." 
 
 23- 8                          SECTION 32. 
 
 23- 9  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 23-10  53-7-33 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 23-11  the power of a testator to dispense with making inventory, 
 23-12  and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 23-13    "53-7-33. 
 
 23-14    A testator may, by will, dispense with the necessity of 
 23-15    the personal representative's making an inventory to the 
 23-16    probate court or the beneficiaries or both, provided the 
 23-17    same does not work any injury to creditors or persons 
 23-18    other than beneficiaries under the will.  If a will was 
 23-19    executed in another state and the will is valid in this 
 23-20    state and under the laws of the state where the will was 
 23-21    executed the personal representative would not have been 
 23-22    required to file inventories or if the will otherwise 
 23-23    expresses an intent to relieve the personal representative 
 23-24    from all reporting requirements, such a will shall be 
 23-25    construed as dispensing with the necessity of inventories 
 23-26    in Georgia, provided the same does not work any injury to 
 23-27    creditors or parties other than beneficiaries under the 
 23-28    will.  In all wills, regardless of the date of execution, 
 23-29    relief from making inventory with the court shall also 
 23-30    relieve the personal representative from sending a copy of 
 23-31    the inventory to the beneficiaries." 
 
 23-32                          SECTION 33. 
 
 23-33  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 23-34  53-7-41 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 23-35  notice for creditors to render accounts and failure of 
 23-36  creditors to give notice of claims, and inserting in its 
 23-37  place the following: 
 
 23-38    "53-7-41. 
 
 23-39    The personal representative shall be allowed six months 
 23-40    from the date of the qualification of the first personal 
 23-41    representative to serve in which to ascertain the 
 23-42    condition of the estate.  Every personal representative 
 
 
                                 -23- 
 
 
 
 24- 1    shall within 60 days from the date of qualification give 
 24- 2    notice by publication, as described in Chapter 11 of this 
 24- 3    title, for creditors of the estate to render an account of 
 24- 4    their demands. Every personal representative shall, within 
 24- 5    60 days from the date of qualification, publish a notice 
 24- 6    directed generally to all of the creditors of the estate 
 24- 7    to render an account of their demands.  The notice shall 
 24- 8    be published once a week for four weeks in the official 
 24- 9    newspaper of the county in which the personal 
 24-10    representative qualified. Creditors who fail to give 
 24-11    notice of claims within three months from the date of 
 24-12    publication of the personal representative's last notice 
 24-13    shall lose all rights to an equal participation with 
 24-14    creditors of equal priority to whom distribution is made 
 24-15    before notice of such claims is brought to the personal 
 24-16    representative, and they may not hold the personal 
 24-17    representative liable for a misappropriation of the funds. 
 24-18    If, however, there are assets in the hands of the personal 
 24-19    representative sufficient to pay such debts and if no 
 24-20    claims of greater priority are unpaid, the assets shall be 
 24-21    thus appropriated notwithstanding failure to give notice." 
 
 24-22                          SECTION 34. 
 
 24-23  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 24-24  53-7-45 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 24-25  compromise of claims, and inserting in its place the 
 24-26  following: 
 
 24-27    "53-7-45. 
 
 24-28    Personal representatives are authorized to compromise, 
 24-29    adjust, arbitrate, assign, sue or defend, abandon, or 
 24-30    otherwise deal with or settle debts or claims in favor of 
 24-31    or against the estate.  A personal representative who 
 24-32    declines to litigate any claim may assign the claim to a 
 24-33    creditor or an heir of an intestate estate or a 
 24-34    beneficiary of a testate estate for the purpose of 
 24-35    prosecuting the claim at that person's own expense and, 
 24-36    after reimbursement of the expenses to the creditor, heir, 
 24-37    or beneficiary, any remaining proceeds shall be paid over 
 24-38    to the personal representative for administration." 
 
 24-39                          SECTION 35. 
 
 24-40  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 24-41  53-7-50 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 24-42  petition by a personal representative for discharge, 
 24-43  citation and publication, hearings, and subsequently 
 
 
                                 -24- 
 
 
 
 25- 1  discovered estates, and inserting in its place the 
 25- 2  following: 
 
 25- 3    "53-7-50. 
 
 25- 4    (a) A personal representative who has fully performed all 
 25- 5    duties or who has been allowed to resign may petition the 
 25- 6    probate court for discharge from the office and from all 
 25- 7    liability.  The petition shall state that the personal 
 25- 8    representative has fully administered the estate of the 
 25- 9    decedent and shall set forth the names and addresses of 
 25-10    all known heirs of an intestate decedent or beneficiaries 
 25-11    of a testate decedent, including any persons who succeeded 
 25-12    to the interest of any heir or beneficiary who died after 
 25-13    the decedent died, and shall name which of the heirs or 
 25-14    beneficiaries is or should be represented by a guardian. 
 25-15    The petition shall state that the personal representative 
 25-16    has paid all claims against the estate or shall enumerate 
 25-17    which claims of the estate have not been paid and the 
 25-18    reason for such nonpayment. The petition shall also state 
 25-19    that the personal representative has filed all necessary 
 25-20    inventory and returns or, alternatively, has been relieved 
 25-21    of such filings by the testator, the heirs or 
 25-22    beneficiaries, or the probate court. 
 
 25-23      (b)(1) Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3) of this 
 25-24      subsection, upon Upon the filing of a petition for 
 25-25      discharge, citation shall issue to all heirs or 
 25-26      beneficiaries, as provided in Chapter 11 of this title, 
 25-27      requiring them to file any objections to the discharge, 
 25-28      except that in all cases a citation shall be published 
 25-29      one time in the newspaper in which sheriff's 
 25-30      advertisements are published in the county in which the 
 25-31      petition is filed at least ten days prior to the date on 
 25-32      or before which any objection is required to be filed. 
 25-33      Any creditors whose claims are disputed shall be served 
 25-34      in accordance with Chapter 11 of this title. 
 
 25-35      (2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) of this subsection, it 
 25-36      shall not be necessary to notify any heir or beneficiary 
 25-37      who has relieved the personal representative of all 
 25-38      liability or any heir or beneficiary with respect to 
 25-39      whom the personal representative has been relieved of 
 25-40      all further liability in a binding proceeding such as a 
 25-41      settlement of accounts pursuant to Code Sections 53-7-60 
 25-42      through 53-7-63 or an intermediate report pursuant to 
 25-43      Code Sections 53-7-73 through 53-7-76. 
 
 
 
                                 -25- 
 
 
 
 26- 1      (3) For purposes of this Code section, a beneficiary is 
 26- 2      a person, including a trust, who is designated in a will 
 26- 3      to take an interest in real or personal property and who 
 26- 4      (A) has a present interest, including but not limited to 
 26- 5      a vested remainder interest but not including a trust 
 26- 6      beneficiary where there is a trustee who is not also the 
 26- 7      personal representative seeking discharge and (B) whose 
 26- 8      identity and whereabouts are known or may be determined 
 26- 9      by reasonable diligence. 
 
 26-10    (c) If any party in interest files objection to the 
 26-11    discharge, a hearing shall be held.  If as a result of the 
 26-12    hearing, the probate court is satisfied that the personal 
 26-13    representative has faithfully and honestly discharged the 
 26-14    office, an order shall be entered releasing and 
 26-15    discharging the personal representative from all 
 26-16    liability. If no objections are filed, the probate court 
 26-17    shall enter the order for discharge without further 
 26-18    proceedings or delay. Any heir or beneficiary or creditor 
 26-19    who is a minor at the time of the discharge and who is not 
 26-20    represented by a guardian may, within two years of 
 26-21    reaching the age of majority, commence suit against the 
 26-22    personal representative and such discharge shall be no bar 
 26-23    to the action. 
 
 26-24    (d) If other property of the estate is discovered after an 
 26-25    estate has been settled and the personal representative 
 26-26    discharged, the probate court, upon petition of any 
 26-27    interested person and upon such notice as it directs, may 
 26-28    appoint the same personal representative or a successor 
 26-29    personal representative to administer the subsequently 
 26-30    discovered estate.  If a new appointment is made, unless 
 26-31    the probate court orders otherwise, the provisions of this 
 26-32    title shall apply as appropriate; but no claim previously 
 26-33    barred may be asserted in the subsequent administration. 
 
 26-34    (e) A personal representative may petition the court 
 26-35    solely for discharge from office by filing the petition 
 26-36    described in subsection (a) of this Code section and by 
 26-37    giving notice by publication one time in the official 
 26-38    county newspaper and by first-class mail to all creditors 
 26-39    of the estate whose claims have not been paid informing 
 26-40    them of their right to file an objection and be heard as 
 26-41    described in subsection (c) of this Code section." 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -26- 
 
 
 
 27- 1                          SECTION 36. 
 
 27- 2  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 27- 3  53-7-51 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 27- 4  disposition of unclaimed funds upon discharge, and inserting 
 27- 5  in its place the following: 
 
 27- 6    "53-7-51. 
 
 27- 7    If funds are in the hands of the personal representative 
 27- 8    and no person claims such funds, the probate court may 
 27- 9    nevertheless grant a discharge, at the same time passing 
 27-10    an order requiring the personal representative to deposit 
 27-11    the funds in a solvent bank as the court may direct.  The 
 27-12    discharge shall not take effect until the money is 
 27-13    deposited." 
 
 27-14                          SECTION 37. 
 
 27-15  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 27-16  53-7-68 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 27-17  mailing of the return to heirs and beneficiaries and 
 27-18  relieving the personal representative of the duty to file a 
 27-19  return, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 27-20    "53-7-68. 
 
 27-21    (a) Upon filing the annual return with the probate court, 
 27-22    the personal representative shall mail by first-class mail 
 27-23    a copy of the return, but not the vouchers, to each heir 
 27-24    of an intestate estate or each beneficiary of a testate 
 27-25    estate.  It shall not be necessary to mail a copy of the 
 27-26    return to any heir or beneficiary who is not sui juris or 
 27-27    for the court to appoint a guardian for such person. The 
 27-28    personal representative shall file a verified statement 
 27-29    with the probate court stating that all required mailings 
 27-30    of the return to heirs or beneficiaries have been made. 
 
 27-31    (b) Any heir or beneficiary may waive individually the 
 27-32    right to receive a copy of the annual return by a written 
 27-33    statement that is delivered to the personal 
 27-34    representative.  Such waiver may be revoked in writing at 
 27-35    any time. 
 
 27-36    (c) By unanimous written consent, the heirs of an 
 27-37    intestate estate or the beneficiaries of a testate estate 
 27-38    may authorize the probate court to relieve the personal 
 27-39    representative from filing annual returns with them or 
 27-40    with the court or both, in the same manner as provided in 
 27-41    subsection (b) of Code Section 53-7-1.  Any such unanimous 
 
 
 
                                 -27- 
 
 
 
 28- 1    written consent, regardless of the date of execution, 
 28- 2    which relieves the personal representative from filing 
 28- 3    annual returns with the court shall also relieve the 
 28- 4    personal representative from sending a copy of the return 
 28- 5    to the beneficiaries." 
 
 28- 6                          SECTION 38. 
 
 28- 7  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 28- 8  53-7-69 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 28- 9  power of a testator to dispense with the necessity of a 
 28-10  return, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 28-11    "53-7-69. 
 
 28-12    A testator may, by will, dispense with the necessity of 
 28-13    the personal representative's filing an annual return with 
 28-14    the probate court or the beneficiaries or both, provided 
 28-15    the same does not work any injury to creditors or persons 
 28-16    other than beneficiaries under the will.  If a will was 
 28-17    executed in another state and the will is valid in this 
 28-18    state and under the laws of the state where the will was 
 28-19    executed the personal representative would not have been 
 28-20    required to file annual returns or if the will otherwise 
 28-21    expresses an intent to relieve the personal representative 
 28-22    from all reporting requirements, such a will shall be 
 28-23    construed as dispensing with the necessity of annual 
 28-24    returns in Georgia, provided the same does not work any 
 28-25    injury to creditors or parties other than beneficiaries 
 28-26    under the will.  In all wills, regardless of the date of 
 28-27    execution, relief from filing returns with the court shall 
 28-28    also relieve the personal representative from sending a 
 28-29    copy of the return to the beneficiaries." 
 
 28-30                          SECTION 39. 
 
 28-31  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (c) of 
 28-32  Code Section 53-7-73 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 28-33  relating to the filing and contents of an intermediate 
 28-34  report and notice to heirs and beneficiaries, and inserting 
 28-35  in its place the following: 
 
 28-36    "(c) The probate court, upon the petition and return being 
 28-37    filed, shall issue a citation and shall require any 
 28-38    objections to be filed on the date set for the hearing 
 28-39    fixed by the court at a regular term of the court that 
 28-40    convenes not less than 20 days after the date of filing of 
 28-41    the petition in conformity with Chapter 11 of this title. 
 28-42    Service shall be made on the heirs of an intestate estate 
 
 
 
                                 -28- 
 
 
 
 29- 1    or the beneficiaries of a testate estate or such other 
 29- 2    persons as the court requires in conformity with Chapter 
 29- 3    11 of this title." 
 
 29- 4                          SECTION 40. 
 
 29- 5  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 29- 6  53-7-74 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 29- 7  filing of objections to intermediate reports, continuation 
 29- 8  of hearings, and appeals, and inserting in its place the 
 29- 9  following: 
 
 29-10    "53-7-74. 
 
 29-11    At or before the time fixed for hearing, any parties at 
 29-12    interest may file objections to the personal 
 29-13    representative's report, actions, and accounting, in which 
 29-14    case the hearing on the accounting shall be automatically 
 29-15    continued until the next regular term of the probate court 
 29-16    a date certain, when, subject to the court's power to 
 29-17    grant continuances, the same shall be heard as other cases 
 29-18    pending in the court with like right of appeal to the 
 29-19    superior court; in such case, an appeal by consent may be 
 29-20    taken to the superior court.  Such appellate procedures 
 29-21    shall not apply to cases provided for by Article 6 of 
 29-22    Chapter 9 of Title 15.  The parties at interest who have 
 29-23    been served appropriately and who have filed no objections 
 29-24    to the report and accounting need not be served with 
 29-25    notice of an appeal or any other or further proceedings, 
 29-26    and their consent shall not be required for an appeal to 
 29-27    the superior court." 
 
 29-28                          SECTION 41. 
 
 29-29  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (c) of 
 29-30  Code Section 53-8-1 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 29-31  relating to authorized investments, standard of care, 
 29-32  deviation from the will or other disposition, and 
 29-33  investments by a personal representative who is a bank or 
 29-34  trust company, and inserting in its place the following: 
 
 29-35    "(c) Within the limitations of the standard provided in 
 29-36    subsection (b) of this Code section and considering 
 29-37    individual investments as a part of an overall 
 29-38    administrative strategy, a personal representative is 
 29-39    authorized to acquire and retain every kind of property 
 29-40    whether real, personal, or mixed, and every kind of 
 29-41    investment, specifically including, but not by way of 
 29-42    limitation, bonds, debentures, and other corporate 
 
 
 
                                 -29- 
 
 
 
 30- 1    obligations and stocks, preferred or common, which persons 
 30- 2    of prudence, discretion, and intelligence acquire or 
 30- 3    retain for their own account; and within the limitations 
 30- 4    of such standard, a personal representative may retain 
 30- 5    property properly acquired, without limitation as to time 
 30- 6    and without regard to its suitability for original 
 30- 7    purchase." 
 
 30- 8                          SECTION 42. 
 
 30- 9  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 30-10  Code Section 53-8-15 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 30-11  relating to passage of title to heirs or beneficiaries and 
 30-12  assent of the personal representative, and inserting in its 
 30-13  place the following: 
 
 30-14    "(a) The title to all property of an estate being in the 
 30-15    personal representative for the payment of debts and other 
 30-16    purposes of administration, title to property in the 
 30-17    estate does not pass to the heirs or beneficiaries until 
 30-18    the personal representative assents thereto in evidence of 
 30-19    the distribution of the property to them, except as 
 30-20    otherwise provided in Code Section 53-2-7." 
 
 30-21                          SECTION 43. 
 
 30-22  Said title is further amended by striking Code Section 
 30-23  53-9-14 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," relating to 
 30-24  reports of conservators and court orders, and inserting in 
 30-25  its place the following: 
 
 30-26    "53-9-14. 
 
 30-27    The conservator shall within 60 days after appointment 
 30-28    make a written report to the probate court setting forth 
 30-29    the condition of the estate of the missing individual, 
 30-30    together with a schedule of any debts that may be owed by 
 30-31    the missing person, an estimate of the income from the 
 30-32    estate and the expenses necessary to its preservation, and 
 30-33    a statement showing the names, ages, and condition of any 
 30-34    individuals who may have been dependent on the missing 
 30-35    person for support, and a recommendation as to how the 
 30-36    estate should be distributed.  The court, after 
 30-37    considering the report and making any further 
 30-38    investigation the court may deem necessary, shall make 
 30-39    such order as will most effectively tend to provide for 
 30-40    the support of any individuals who may have been dependent 
 30-41    upon the missing individual for support and for the 
 30-42    handling of the property, including any business or 
 
 
 
                                 -30- 
 
 
 
 31- 1    business interest, owned by the missing person.  The order 
 31- 2    may provide for the payment of those debts of the missing 
 31- 3    person as the court deems just and proper.  The order An 
 31- 4    order of an appropriate court may allow the conservator to 
 31- 5    engage in such estate planning dispositions of the missing 
 31- 6    person's property as are authorized by Code Section 
 31- 7    29-5-5.1.  The order may be modified in the discretion of 
 31- 8    the court at any time upon petition by the conservator, 
 31- 9    any individual dependent upon the missing individual for 
 31-10    support, the guardian of any such individual, or any 
 31-11    person having an interest in the property or in any 
 31-12    business of the missing individual." 
 
 31-13                          SECTION 44. 
 
 31-14  Said title is further amended by striking subsections (a) 
 31-15  and (b) of Code Section 53-11-2 of the "Revised Probate Code 
 31-16  of 1998," relating to the definition of "guardian," persons 
 31-17  represented, appointment, successors, and guardians named in 
 31-18  petition, and inserting in their place the following: 
 
 31-19    "(a) As used in this Code section, the term 'guardian' 
 31-20    means the guardian ad litem appointed by the probate court 
 31-21    who may represent a single party or more than one party or 
 31-22    a class of parties with common or nonadverse interests; 
 31-23    provided, however, that the court may determine for the 
 31-24    purpose of the particular proceeding that the natural 
 31-25    guardian, if any, or the testamentary guardian, if any, or 
 31-26    the duly constituted guardian of the property, if any, or 
 31-27    the duly constituted guardian of the person, if any, has 
 31-28    no conflict of interest and thus may serve as guardian 
 31-29    represent for the purpose of the proceeding for a party 
 31-30    who is not sui juris, who is unborn, or who is unknown. 
 
 31-31    (b) When a party to a proceeding in the probate court is 
 31-32    not sui juris, is unborn, or is unknown, that party shall 
 31-33    be represented in the proceeding by a guardian as defined 
 31-34    in subsection (a) of this Code section.  Service upon or 
 31-35    notice to a guardian shall constitute service upon or 
 31-36    notice to the party represented and no additional service 
 31-37    upon or notice to such party shall be required.  Waivers, 
 31-38    acknowledgments, consents, answers, objections, or other 
 31-39    documents executed by the guardian shall be binding upon 
 31-40    the party represented." 
 
 31-41                          SECTION 45. 
 
 31-42  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (d) of 
 31-43  Code Section 53-11-3 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 
 
                                 -31- 
 
 
 
 32- 1  relating to personal service generally, and inserting in its 
 32- 2  place the following: 
 
 32- 3    "(d) Individuals who are not sui juris shall be served as 
 32- 4    provided in this Code section chapter or as provided in 
 32- 5    Code Section 15-9-17.  Incapacitated individuals who are 
 32- 6    residents of this state but are confined in another state 
 32- 7    may be served by service on a guardian ad litem appointed 
 32- 8    in this state." 
 
 32- 9                          SECTION 46. 
 
 32-10  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (b) of 
 32-11  Code Section 53-11-6 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 32-12  relating to waivers or acknowledgment of service or notice 
 32-13  and consent to granting of relief or entry of an order, and 
 32-14  inserting in its place the following: 
 
 32-15    "(b) Except as otherwise prescribed by law, the written 
 32-16    consent of a party to the granting of any relief or the 
 32-17    entry of any order sought in a proceeding, whether 
 32-18    executed before or after the filing of the petition, shall 
 32-19    constitute a waiver and acknowledgment of notice and 
 32-20    service of the proceedings, waiver of citation, entry of 
 32-21    appearance, answer admitting all allegations of fact set 
 32-22    forth in the petition as true and correct, and irrevocable 
 32-23    consent to the granting of the relief or the order 
 32-24    sought." 
 
 32-25                          SECTION 47. 
 
 32-26  Said title is further amended by striking subsection (a) of 
 32-27  Code Section 53-11-9 of the "Revised Probate Code of 1998," 
 32-28  relating to issuance of citation upon filing of a petition, 
 32-29  contents, and meaning, and inserting in its place the 
 32-30  following: 
 
 32-31    "(a) Upon the filing of a petition, a citation shall be 
 32-32    issued addressed to the persons required to be served or 
 32-33    entitled to notice; provided, however, if all parties have 
 32-34    acknowledged service and assented to the petition, no 
 32-35    citation need issue. The citation shall state that any 
 32-36    objection must be made in writing and shall designate the 
 32-37    date on or before which objections must be filed in the 
 32-38    probate court. The citation also shall state whether the 
 32-39    hearing will take place on a certain date or be specially 
 32-40    scheduled for a later date. Where appropriate, the 
 32-41    citation shall state that if no objections are filed, the 
 32-42    petition will be granted With respect to all proceedings 
 
 
 
                                 -32- 
 
 
 
 33- 1    under this title, the citation, if any, may state that if 
 33- 2    no objections are filed the petition may be granted 
 33- 3    without a hearing." 
 
 33- 4                          SECTION 48. 
 
 33- 5  All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are 
 33- 6  repealed. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                 -33- 

Clerk of the House
Robert E. Rivers, Jr., Clerk
Last Updated on 04/28/98

S>