A last will and testament is filed or deposited with the clerk's office after death.
The originally executed last will & testament should be deposited for safekeeping (when no probate case is filed). There are no fees associated with depositing the will for safekeeping. However, if you request a certified copy of the will, fees are $1 per page and $2 for the certification. NOTE: Wills deposited for safekeeping are not recorded in official records and are deposited per Florida Statute with the clerk to maintain. Anyone possessing an Original Last Will & Testament of a decedent may deposit the will for safekeeping.
When depositing the will for safekeeping you should bring the death certificate (short form) with you. The clerk will not keep the death certificate as it is utilized for informational purposes only in relation to depositing a will. If the death certificate is not yet available you may still deposit the original will for safekeeping, you must have the decedent's date of death and social security number.
An originally executed will may also be filed in a probate case. If the court enters an order admitting the will to probate court, the will shall be recorded and receive an official Book and Page number. There are no recording costs associated with the recording of a will.
Original Death certificates may also be recorded in official records without the necessity of filing a probate case. The death certificate to be recorded should not include the cause of death (if issued in Florida). The recording fee for a death certificate is $10.
Recording any other States death certificate that shows the cause of death CAN be recorded in our official records – providing that the State of Issuance does not provide one without cause. The cost for recording remains $10. However, if the death certificate is double-sided the cost to record will be $18.50.
Are Death Certificates required in Probate Cases?
Typically death certificates are filed in all probate cases. For information regarding your case specifically, you may wish to seek the advice of legal counsel.
The death certificate may be filed via the Florida e-filing portal along with all other pleadings. You may also submit your $10 recording fee via the e-filing portal if you wish to have the e-filed death certificate recorded.
You may also mail or hand-deliver an original death certificate for filing into a probate case.