Background on probate, the ‘biggest business in the world’ stat (TX)

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Over at Impeachrandykennedy’s Blog, Danny Tate is talking again about probate courts as “the biggest business in the world.”

As he references a statistic provided to him by Estate of Denial®, we thought this a good time to share the full context from which that information came.  This September 2010 post excerpt explains:

Today’s post well describes the immense wealth passing through these courts and the subsequent power derived.  Our first EoD column, “Grave” Problems in Texas: Looting Assets of the Dead and Disabled discussed similar issues.  In October 2006, Harris County (Houston) Probate Judge Mike Wood – a controversial figure in his own right – testified before the Texas Senate Committee on Jurisprudence and offered interesting insight to the “probate business.”  He told of a 1995 analysis indicating that assets and inventories filed for his approval (and not necessarily including all independently-administered estate assets which also he supervises) were approximately $750 million per quarter.  He said the $3 billion annual figure held true five years later.  While this court was described as “probably one of the busiest probate courts in the nation,” that still is a staggering number and to extrapolate even a far-diminished dollar amount to the massive number of probate courts throughout this country helps illustrate the wealth controlled by this venue.

This $750 million per quarter figure continues to be staggering and seems unlikely to drop anytime soon with Texas’ aging population and its current relocation popularity.

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