Massachusetts Small Estate Affidavit


The Massachusetts Small Estate Affidavit (MP 170) is a legal document used solely for lawfully obtaining the estate of a loved one that recently passed away. The form has to be completed by a successor (also called an “heir” or “petitioner”) to the person that died (called the “decedent”). In Massachusetts, an individual has a choice of four (4) options for probating an estate: 1) informal probate, 2) formal probate, 3) late and limited formal probate, and 4) voluntary administration. Voluntary administration is the least complex of the options, and can be pursued using the affidavit. The state provides a specific document that must be used, a three-page form called “Voluntary Administration Statement (Form MPC 170)”. In order to qualify to use it, the state-mandated requirements noted below must be met.

Laws: MGL c. 190B, Section 3-1201


Maximum Estate Value: $25,000

Required Conditions: State-mandated conditions must be upheld for the lawful execution of a Massachusetts Small Estate Affidavit to take place, as follows:

  1. The Decedent must have been a Massachusetts resident
  2. The Decedent must not have left behind real estate,
  3. The Decedent must have passed away at least thirty (30) days prior, and
  4. The Petitioner must be an “interested person”.

Probate Types

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides a useful explanation of the four (4) different types of probating an estate. To ensure that a small estate affidavit is the correct form type to pursue, the applying individual should refer to the page, “Learn about the types of probate for an estate“.