Probate Court

Probate Court is a court of limited jurisdiction responsible for the probate and administration of estates for Dade County residents. The Probate Court exercises exclusive, original jurisdiction in the probate of wills, administration of estates, appointment of guardians and involuntary hospitalization of incapacitated adults and other individuals. Kerri Carter is Judge of Probate Court in Dade County.

Duties & Responsibilities

All probate court judges administer oaths of office and issue marriage licenses. They may hold habeas corpus hearings or preside over criminal preliminary hearings. Unless a jury trial is requested, probate court judges may also hear certain misdemeanors, traffic cases and violations of state game and fish laws in counties where there is no state court. When authorized by local statute, probate judges serve as election supervisors and make appointments to certain local public offices.

Public Record

It is a court of record; therefore, all documents filed in Probate Court must be recorded in minute books and kept permanently available to the public.

Qualifications for Probate Judges

Probate court judges are elected to four-year terms in countywide, partisan elections. A candidate for judge of the probate court must be at least 25 years of age, a high school graduate, a U.S. citizen and a county resident for at least two years preceding the election. In counties with more than 96,000 residents, a candidate for probate judge must have practiced law for seven years and be at least 30 years of age.

Customer Service

The Probate Court is committed to providing you with excellent customer service. We will be happy to assist you with any questions or concerns you may have about the services of this office or the procedures you must follow for a particular process. Please be advised, however, that state law prohibits our staff from rendering legal advice, restating the law or recommending specific ways to pursue legal action. If you have a problem involving the interpretation of the law, we suggest you contact an attorney licensed in the State of Georgia.

More Information

The Dade County Probate Court has its own web page at Georgia Courts which provides valuable information about wills and probate in general, as well as links to downloadable forms.