What is the Orphans' Court and why does it matter? The Orphans' Court is Maryland's probate court. Probate is the judicial process of the proving of the validity of a will. The court oversees estates and ensures closure according to Maryland law. Orphans' Courts are the court one typically doesn't know until they need it. We don't often enjoy speaking let alone thinking of death and finality. The term Orphans' Court reaches back to England and the City of London’s Court for Widows and Orphans. A more fitting name may for the court may be the Court for the Bereaved, as the court affects more than just the orphan. Anyone that looses both parents is technically an orphan but the decedent may leave behind debts that affect others, including businesses and extended family members. In Maryland most counties have three Orphans' Court judges who sit together and are termed lay-judges. In other words a judge without formal legal training and certification. The court works with the Register of Wills as the constitutionally appointed clerk for the court. The judges of the Orphans' Court appoint a Register in the case of a vacancy of the position.