Professor Frances Miller lectures on the basics of probate and circumventing the probate process in this video from Boston University. Please note the lecture was delivered in 2007; therefore, the dollar amounts on the exemptions mentioned may not be current.
From the website:
Boston University School of Law Professor Frances Miller outlines estate-planning procedures and the basics of the probate process. Although probate is necessary in order to collect debts and start the nonclaim statute, Miller says, many people want to avoid the process because it is expensive, time-consuming, and public. To avoid probate with the bulk of assets is the key, she says, explaining that it may be done through joint tenancy.