No, not every estateThe assets and liabilities left behind by a decedent. needs to go through formal probateThe legal proceeding by which a decedent’s testamentary document, such as a will, is proven to be valid, and the subsequent procedure of administering the decedent’s estate. proceedings, and some estates only need minimal involvement of the probate court. A small estate does not require formal probate proceedings at all. When a decedentA person who has passed away. left a willA legal document which expresses a person’s final wishes about what happens to their property after they pass away, often specifically identifying intended beneficiaries for specific items of property., then the executorA person who is identified in a decedent’s will as the person the decedent wants to become responsible for administering the decedent’s estate according to the terms and instructions of the will. can administer the estate with minimal oversight of the probate court.