Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
Court: means the court then exercising probate jurisdiction in the county in which the decedent had legal residence on the date of death. See Tennessee Code 30-4-102
Decedent: A deceased person.
Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
Person: means an individual, partnership, firm, business trust, corporation or other legal entity, and includes both singular and plural and masculine and feminine, as appropriate. See Tennessee Code 30-4-102
Personal representative: when applied to those who represent a decedent, includes executors and administrators, unless the context implies heirs and distributees. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
Property: means personal property, or any interest in personal property, owned by the decedent on the date of death, other than personal property held as tenants by the entirety or jointly with right of survivorship or personal property payable to a beneficiary other than the decedent's estate. See Tennessee Code 30-4-102
Representative: when applied to those who represent a decedent, includes executors and administrators, unless the context implies heirs and distributees. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
Every person indebted to decedent‘s estate, or having possession of any property belonging to the estate, or acting as registrar or transfer agent of any shares of stock, bonds, notes or other evidence of ownership, indebtedness, property or right belonging to decedent’s estate shall be furnished a copy of the affidavit by the affiant, duly certified to by the clerk of the court, and upon receipt of the copy of affidavit, and upon demand of the affiant, shall pay, transfer and deliver to affiant all indebtedness owing by and other property in possession of or subject to registration and/or transfer by, the person to whom the copy of affidavit has been delivered.
Every person making payment, transfer or delivery of property belonging to a decedent’s estate to the affiant pursuant to this chapter shall be released and discharged from all further liability to the estate and its creditors to the same extent as if the payment, transfer or delivery were made to the duly appointed, qualified and acting personal representative of the decedent, and the person making the payment, transfer or delivery shall not be required to see to its application or to inquire into the truth or completeness of any statement in the affidavit.
If the decedent left a will, the decedent’s property shall be distributed as provided in the will, and if the decedent left no will it shall go to the decedent’s heirs as provided by law in case of other intestacies, and both the affiant and the person to whom payment, transfer or delivery of any property is made by the affiant shall be and remain liable, to the extent of the value of the property so received, to unpaid creditors of the decedent and to every other person having a prior claim against the decedent’s estate or prior right to any of the decedent’s property, and also shall be accountable to any personal representative of the decedent thereafter appointed.
For a decedent dying before January 1, 2016, the affiant shall file returns and pay the tax on property in the decedent’s estate, as required by title 67, chapter 8, parts 3-5, as now or hereafter amended, revised or recodified.
If any person having possession of any of the decedent’s property, upon receipt of a copy of the affidavit certified by the clerk, refuses to pay, transfer or deliver the property to or at the direction of the affiant, the property may be recovered or transfer and delivery of the property compelled in an action brought in any court of competent jurisdiction for that purpose upon proof of the facts required to be stated in the affidavit, and costs of the proceeding shall be adjudged against a person wrongfully refusing to pay, transfer or deliver the property.