Probate is not a very familiar term, which is why the majority aren’t aware of what probate really is. Having at least an average idea of what probate is and what it involves will help you when you are faced with certain probate issues.
Probate is a term that was coined from the Latin term, which means “to prove the will.” Probate is the process in which a probate court determines the validity of a statement or a will. Probate can as well be described as the process by which a probate court supervises the administration of a decedent’s estate.
Probate Attorney and Probate
A probate attorney is that individual that is capable of handling a probate case. You can decide to handle the probate case yourself, but doing so will be risky. The probate process involves several complicated steps and rules which must be strictly adhered to. Failure to adhere to such rules or failure to tender the right document as requested by the probate court could end up affecting the estate, or it might prolong the probate process.
Probate is carried out to ensure that all ultimate debts, taxes, including expenses, are settled, and the remaining assets are then shared to the beneficiaries, as stated in the will. In the case where there is no will present, the assets of the decedent would be distributed based on the intestate law of the state where his or her properties are. After the demise of a person, the individual stated in the will as the executor or personal representative of the estate, anyone receiving property under the will or having a financial inclination in the estate of the individual who possesses the will may have to prove the validity of the will before a probate court.
Probate law and your state
It is also important to note that every state has its unique probate law, so when hiring a probate attorney, ensure that you go for one who is well accustomed to the probate laws of the state you reside in.
Generally, wills are filed in the county where the decedent resided, but due to some circumstances, the will may be filed in the county where the decedent’s property is located.
Truth about the Litigation of an Estate
The personal administrator of a will, including the executor of an estate that is being probated under intestate succession, both have some fiduciary tasks which they much carry out for the beneficiaries of the will. These tasks are property management, investments, including other facets of the estate, and working to ensure that the beneficiaries get their appropriate share of the asset, as stated in the will of the deceased.
An executor or estate administrator must not carry out dealings based on self-interest, everything he or she does must be for the best interest of the estate beneficiaries. If the executor fails in his duty, he or she may be sued in court for breach of trust. He or she may be held responsible for loss, depreciation, including other damages that occur as a result of the unscrupulous action.
The Significance of Wills
If an individual kicks the bucket without preparing a will, or if the individual dies “interstate,” state law will have control regarding how the assets or estate of the decedent will be shared. The court will select an administrator whose duty will be to supervise the estate of the deceased while the probate process is on.
The administrator who will be selected by the court may or may not be an acquaintance. If you prepare a will before your death, you can select who you wish to be the executor of your estate.
The Administration of an Estate
The administration of an estate hinge on if the deceased prepared a will before his or her demise or if the deceased died intestate. In any of the stated case, the estate will undergo administration via a process which is regarded as probate.
Selecting a Probate Attorney
In choosing a probate attorney, ensure you go for one that can help you with that probate case of yours. There are several quack and inexperienced probate lawyers out there, so be sure that you hire an experienced and compassionate probate lawyer.
Also, because probate laws vary in each state, ensure you go for a probate attorney that is well accustomed to the probate laws of your state. If you reside in New York, go for a probate attorney that accustomed to the probate laws in New York.