Frequently Asked Questions
What estate planning documents should I have?
Everyone should consider having the following estate planning documents:
Last Will and Testament
Durable Power of Attorney for business affairs
Health Care Power of Attorney
Declaration of a Desire for a Natural Death (Living Will)
Accountings - Reports the contain the annual and final fiscal reports showing receipts and disbursements with date and purpose.
Estate Papers - The original probate papers such as wills, inventories, letters, accountings and related papers.
Probate - The legal process of wrapping up a person's affairs, paying their bills and distributing their assets.
Testator - A person who has made a legally valid will before death.
Will Books - Recorded transcripts of the original probate wills that give information about proving the will and qualifying the personal representative.
I have a contested case. Can I talk to the judge about it?
A contested case is one where there is animosity or disagreement among the parties about how an estate should be handled. Under the South Carolina rules of court, one party is not allowed to talk with the judge without the other parties being present – this is called the “rule against ex parte contacts.” If you are involved in a dispute concerning a Will, Trust, Conservatorship or other matter and the family cannot resolve it privately, you should talk to a lawyer about the matter and retain counsel to represent you. If the disagreement is concerning a relatively minor administrative duty, however, you can talk to the estate supervisor assigned to your case. The estate supervisor may recommend you retain counsel to advise you, however, since this office cannot offer legal advice in contested cases.
What is required for one to apply for a marriage license?
A person must be at least eighteen (18) years of age or have parental consent.
The license is normally issued following the mandatory twenty-four (24) hour waiting period once the application is filed and after the fee is paid.
What are the requirements for having a legal will?
The document must be in writing, signed by a testator who is at least eighteen (18) years old and have two witnesses. You should consult an attorney to prepare your will, and you should NEVER attempt to prepare your own will. Also, if you have a will, you should never alter that document in any way without first consulting an attorney.
In South Carolina, how is the property of a deceased citizen awarded?
If a person dies without a will, the law of interstate succession controls probate property. Generally, the property passes in accordance with the deceased's family tree (unless there are non probate transfers).
Greenwood County Beginning Lake Locator Initiative
9/28/22, 4:00 PM
Greenwood County and City of Greenwood Sign Fire Services Automatic Aid Agreement
9/23/22, 4:00 PM
Greenwood County Voter Registration and Elections Office Moving to New Location
9/9/22, 4:00 PM
The Greenwood Probate Court hopes you find this information useful and informative. Some brief overviews of the services provided by the court along with some general information follow.
Greenwood County Probate Court has contact with approximately 1,500 families annually. As you should expect, each case is different, which makes it difficult to advise families until the court has all the information. As individual circumstances differ, probate requirements will vary.
Probate Court issues approximately 600 Marriage Licenses annually and the Mental Health Division handles 250 plus cases per year. As a busy office, we seek to be sensitive and understanding as we serve Greenwood County.
The Probate Court assists the citizens of Greenwood County in probating estates, resolving disputes in estates and trusts, handling involuntary commitments for alcohol/drug abuse and/or mental illness, obtaining marriage licenses, appointing and supervising guardians and conservators, and approving minor and wrongful death settlements.
The Probate Court includes the Estate, Commitment, and Marriage Divisions. The Probate Judge is elected countywide and serves a four-year term.
Please utilize the links below to learn more about the Probate Court and the services offered:
Marriage License/Wedding Ceremony Information:
In an effort to help slow the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), the Greenwood County Probate Court has implemented a temporary Marriage License Application process. Please utilize the instructions and application provided in the link below to apply and submit your Marriage License application.
This office does...
Provides support for family members/attorneys to handle deceased person's affairs
Provide assistance in the involuntary commitment of individuals for alcohol/drug problems and/or mental illness
Issue marriage licenses and certified copies of marriage licenses
Appoint and supervise conservators and guardians
Approve minor settlements and wrongful death settlements
This office does not...
Hear criminal cases. Nor are we associated with the Probation Department or the criminal justice system in any way.
Write wills. Please contact your attorney to have your Will prepared or, if you need the name of an attorney who can prepare your Will, contact the South Carolina Lawyer’s Referral Service at 1-800-868-2284