Last Updated on July 30, 2023 by

Probate in Hawaii is necessary when a deceased person owns real estate in their name alone. Also, probate is required if the worth of the personal property’s total value is more than $100, 000. Probate is required so that the property ends up in the hands of those who must inherit it. Under the probate law in hawaii, a written notice must be sent to the individuals the will named and to those who would have inherited something if the will did not exist. All of these parties must see the will, know what’s owned, and ensure the assets are distributed the way the will dictates. 

In general, probate is a legal process intended to divide assets among your family members and creditors. This process can be stressful, expensive, very public, and time-consuming. But there are ways your loved ones can avoid probate:

Having a Will

If you do not have a will when you die, your real and personal property will be distributed based on the intestate succession laws of the state. You need to sign the will and have two witnesses sign it for it to be considered valid. Also, you may have to get the will notarized. 

Creating a Revocable Living Trust

Although upfront fees are involved when establishing a trust, they are often less than the costs associated with probate. In general, the trustee retains control of all assets in a trust during their lifetime. Should the owner become incapacitated, the trust lets the trustee avoid an expensive and public conservatorship proceeding. 

Establishing Joint Ownership

Joint property ownership with the right of survivorship lets assets avoid probate. All properties in a right of survivorship should be passed to the living owner when the other owner dies. But this probate-avoidance benefit can be defeated when both owners pass away simultaneously. 

Designating Beneficiaries

Assets held within some kinds of accounts that have payable-on-death designations or beneficiaries can avoid probate. These include life insurance, bank accounts, and retirement accounts. These designations must be kept up-to-date to avoid losing the probate-avoidance benefit of such accounts. An attorney will process your wishes, ensuring the funds are transferred without problems when you die.


Property received as a gift won’t go through the probate process. The probate estate won’t include the gifted. 

The options discussed above are a great way to make sure your estate is handled based on your wishes during illness or following your passing. With a lot of these options, you may need a lawyer to help you execute them.

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