Where Do You Probate a Will in Texas If the Decedent Was Deemed Insane?


When you die, your will is probated. Probate is the process of validating and formalizing a will. This article will teach you about which county you must probate a will in Texas if the decedent was deemed insane.

Administrator with will annexed:

This means the original executor named in the will was unable or unwilling to act so the court appointed an administrator to distribute the will properly.

Probate Case Law

Thomas v. Price, 534 S.W.2d 730 (Tex. Civ. App. – Waco 1976, no writ)

Facts and Probate Process History

When James E. Thomas passed away the County Court of Ellis County admitted to probate his will and appointed his sister, Lillian Thomas Price, to be Administratrix with Will Annexed of the deceased’s Estate. James was adjudged insane in 1933 and Herb Sucherman alleged himself to be James’ temporary guardian of person and estate. Both Sucherman and James’ alleged common law wife, Trudy M. Thomas, filed a Motion to Stay, and Transfer proceedings to Dallas County. They asserted that 1) James’ residence and domicile was in Dallas County and 2) the prior probate proceedings had been instituted in Dallas County.

The court found that there was no evidence of a marriage ceremony between James and Trudy, making her uninterested in the estate. It also found that James had committed a crime in Dallas County which constituted Sucherman to become his temporary guardian. Since the crime was committed in Dallas County, the guardianship was taken out in Dallas County causing the prior “probate proceedings” to be held there. Sucherman was therefore an uninterested party in the estate. James made a will before being adjudged insane. The will left his entire estate to his sister and at the time the will was created, he lived in Ellis County.

James was not a resident of Dallas County, the principal part of his property did not lie in Dallas County, and transferring the proceedings to Dallas County would not be in convenience of anyone who is an heir or devisee of the decedent. The trial court also took judicial note that James had been declared insane in Ellis County and since his sanity was never restored, his domicile continued in Ellis County. Therefore, the court held that James’ domicile at the time of death was in Ellis County.

Main Considerations of Hearing

If a person is adjudged insane and is never restored, does the person continue to be domiciled in the county in which he was adjudged?

Yes. For purposes of probating a will, the domicile will continue to be the county in which the decedent was adjudged insane.

Can courts take judicial notice of their own records?

Yes. For proceedings on a motion to stay and transfer proceedings in a probate case, the court may take into account any judgments involving the same subject matter and same parties.

Takeaways: Procedure and requirements

Thomas v. Price shows that if a person is declared insane, and is never restored, his domicile will continue to be the county in which he was adjudged. It also shows that in probate matters, the court may be allowed to take judicial note of their own records.

Do you need an Experienced Probate Attorney to help in Probating a Will un the Texas Estates Code?

When it comes to probating a will, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, if the decedent was deemed insane, the will may not be valid. Secondly, Texas law requires that the will be filed with the probate court in the county where the decedent resided. As we learned from Thomas v. Price, if a decedent is declared insane and is never restored, that person’s domicile will continue to be the county in which she or he was adjudged insane.

If you find yourself in need of assistance in probating a will, it is best to seek out the help of an experienced probate attorney. They can guide you through the process and ensure that everything is done correctly. Call us today for a FREE attorney consultation. (210) 436-6601.


How long can an executor take to settle an estate in Texas?

There is no set timeframe for how long an executor has to settle an estate in Texas. However, the executor must make a good faith effort to settle the estate as quickly and efficiently as possible. If the executor does not settle the estate within a reasonable timeframe, the court may name a new executor.

What happens when you probate a will in Texas?

When you probate a will in Texas, the court will appoint an executor to oversee the estate. The executor’s role is to make sure that the deceased person’s debts are paid and that their assets are distributed according to the terms of the will. If the deceased person was deemed insane, the court may appoint a guardianto manage their estate.

Is a probated will public record in Texas?

Yes, a probated will is public record in Texas. The court that probates the will appoints an executor to carry out the terms of the will, and the court supervises the administration of the estate. The court also issues orders and makes decisions on matters related to the estate, which are all public record.

What is the statute of limitations for filing to probate a will in Texas?

In Texas, the statute of limitations to probate a will is four years from the date of the decedent’s death.

How long do you have to file a probate application after death in Texas?

If you are named in someone’s will as the executor, or if the person dies intestate (without a will), you must open probate within four years of the death. There are some exceptions to this rule. If you were out of the country when the person died, or if you were under 18 years old, you have six years to file. If you don’t file within these time limits, you may be prevented from serving as executor and from receiving your inheritance.

Related Posts

Schedule a FREE Consultation