OPENING THE ESTATE
If the Will contains a proper affidavit of the testator and witness executed in the presence of a notary public, it may be "self proved" and no additional proof is needed. If the Will is not self-proving, the Will may be proved by the oath of one of the witnesses. The witness may appear before a probate clerk and sign an oath regarding the execution of the Will. If the Will is not self-proving and the witness resides in another state, a commissioner (usually a notary) in the other state may be appointed by the Florida Circuit Court Judge to take the oath of a witness to the Will. Depending largely on which County is involved, a bond may be required. The bond is an expense of the Estate, and is designed to provide protection to creditors and beneficiaries in case the Personal Representative breaches his or her fiduciary obligation. Click here Sample Probate Bond Rates for a sample rate chart.