E. Concurrent (Non-Mandatory) Jurisdiction

PEF Code §712 provides that the Orphans’ Court has concurrent jurisdiction with the Trial Division of the Court of Common Pleas in the following areas:
The determination of the person to whom real estate passes by will or trust;
  Appointment, control and removal of the guardian of the person of an incapacitated person; and
  The disposition of any case involving a substantial question appropriate for Orphans’ Court determination.
Further, a number of cases have held that claims by creditors against a decedent’s estate may be brought in either the Trial Division or the Orphans’ Court. See, e.g., Perkasie Vulcanizing Co. v. Mundorf, 24 Bucks 352, 62 D & C 2d 769 (1973). The Orphans’ Court has jurisdiction to enforce such claims. See Randall Estate, 385 Pa. 252 (1956); Remick §44.03.
The Orphans’ Court will not assume jurisdiction over a matter in which it has concurrent jurisdiction if the Trial Division previously assumed jurisdiction except upon written order of the President Judge of the Court of Common Pleas. See Phila.O.C. Rule 1.2N.

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