Basic Concepts in Estate Proceedings and Estate Tax

Among the inescapable facts in life, something which everyone shares regardless of status, race, sex or creed, is death. A person may leave properties (or liabilities) upon death, so a discussion on the basic concepts on estate proceedings is in order.

  • Inheritance – Inheritance includes all the property, rights and obligations of a person which are not extinguished by his death. (Civil Code, Art. 776)
  • Testate Estate – An estate of a deceased person which is settled or to be settled with a valid last will and testament.
  • Testator – The deceased person who made a last will and testament. (Civil Code, Art. 775)
  • Probate – A special proceeding to establish the validity of a will. Probate is mandatory, which means that no will passes either real or personal property unless it is proved and allowed in a proper court.
  • Reprobate – A special proceeding to establish the validity of a will previously proved in a foreign country.
  • Legatee – One who is given personal property through a will. (Civil Code, Art. 782)
  • Devisee – One who is given real property in a will. (Civil Code, Art. 782)
  • Executor – The person named in the will who is entrusted to implement its provisions. (Rules of Court, Rule 78)
  • Executrix – A female executor.
  • Administrator – The person entrusted with the care, custody and management of the estate of a decedent until the estate is partitioned and distributed to the heirs, legatees and devisees, if any. (Rules of Court, Rule 78)
  • Administratrix – A female administrator.
  • Special proceedings – A remedy by which a party seeks to establish a status, a right, or a particular fact. (Rules of Court, Rule 1, Sec. 3 [c]). Among the subject matters of special proceedings are escheat and settlement of estate of deceased persons. (Rules of Court, Rule 72, Sec. 1)
  • Escheat – A proceeding whereby the state, by virtue of its sovereignty, steps in and claims the real or personal property of a person who dies intestate leaving no heir. In the absence of a lawful owner, a property is claimed by the state to forestall an open “invitation to self-service by the first comers”. (Republic vs. CA, G.R. No. 143483)
  • Estate tax – A tax on the transfer of the net estate of the decedent. (Tax Reform Act of 1997, Sec. 84)
  • Gross estate – The total value of all property belonging to the decedent at the time of death, wherever situated.
  • Net estate – Gross estate less allowable deductions and exemptions.

32 thoughts on “Basic Concepts in Estate Proceedings and Estate Tax

  1. Avatardivina

    can a child who was registered as a natural child by simulated birth in the birth registration certificate be considered a natural child and therefore a legitimate child and mandatory heir of the adoptive parents? Or her being a “natural legitimate” child, since it was falsified documents invalid from the very beginning? will this have any bearing on future inheritance of the property of the adoptve parents? thanks!

  2. Avatarfairlady

    What documents are required,apart from the heir’s affidavit, for the extrajudicial estate settlement proceedings?

  3. Avatarphil cap

    hi fairlady,

    i’m new to e-legal forum. please allow me to give you some points on your querry.

    normally, when filing an extrajudicial settlement you need the following:

    the birth certificates of the heirs and their the taxpayers identification numbers assuming all the heirs are adults

    of course you will also be needing certified true copies of all transfer certificates of titles of all lands owned and registered under dissidents name. aside from that you will also need certified copies of tax declaration of said real properties.

    for further details, the best government office to get info on this is the bureau of internal revenue where you will be filing your estate tax.

    be warned though that filing curing all the required documents is a long, time consuming, and tedious.

    you may need a lawyer or an accountant to file the estate tax return.

    have a good day.

  4. Avatarphil cap

    i accidentally click submit without proofreading the contents.

    *be warned though that securing all the required documents is a long, time consuming, and tedious process. so you need to be patient on this.

    you wil also be needing marriage contract if the dissident is married.

    taxpayers identification numbers are need for heirs that don’t have TIN yet. otherwise you may fill out a form and the BIR will issue one for them.

    you may check for detailed list of requirements.

    i hope you find this helpful

    have a good day madam.

  5. Avatarnoemi s. acuna

    My husband’s grandparents left a parcel of land to my mother-in-law, and two of her sisters. She and one of the heirs has since passed away. The problem began when the surviving heir transferred said property in their name without advising us. When confronted about it, she said not to worry since she did it just to safeguard her rights and showed us a document that she & her husband made stating that they are willing to give 1/3 of the property to each of the surviving families of her deceased sisters. What options do we have to safeguard our claim to said property?

  6. Avatarbeauty

    Hello. I am a PT student and i am taking 3 units of Political Science. I was required to do a presentation about Bill of Rights, specifically Article III, Section 20 which states that “No person shall be imprisoned for debt and non-payment of poll tax.” I have no idea on how to start my presentation. Little by little, I trying find good and well said explanations that could help me to explain it in class. Can you further explain it to me? While i was browsing around the web, I accidentally saw your site. Fortunately, I saw PAX’s question and Atty. Fred replied to it. It gave me somehow a bit of idea. I hope you could help me in my presentation which is due next wednesday. Thanks a lot. May God bless you and your office. 🙂

  7. Avatarooj4cki3oo

    my dad recently died and my siblings and i are fighting for our right to our house and lot, that is a conjugal property. unfortunately we have a bad relationship with our mom, my question is how can we protect our rights to the house so our mom will not be able to sell the house and lot?

  8. AvatarLauraine

    can non payment of amilyar caused a problem in claiming a land being used by a relative? my dad gave them building permit 20 years back but now that my siblings have families and no home can we take back my parents land?


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