Possibly you have just lost a loved one and recently found out that you are the executor named in their will. Being suddenly dragged into the world of probate and estate administration can be overwhelming especially when you have to do this while dealing with grief, and you need all the help you can get. All you need may be to consult a legal professional for legal advice to set you in the right track. Probate in New York is often quite complex and lengthy and in most cases, you may need to hire a probate attorney in NYC near you. Hiring a probate attorney near you is your best bet in rounding up probate in the shortest possible time with minimal complications.
Understanding New York probate and how a probate attorney NYC can assist you
Probate is a legal process carried out in a law court before the estate of a deceased is disbursed. Probate begins when the executor files a petition along with the will and death certificate of the deceased to the surrogate court in the county where the deceased owned estate. Your attorney can help in drafting the petition to ensure you get everything right and with the proper documents.
Note that probate will only be necessary in New York if the total estate left by the deceased values over $30,000. Estate below this value will be disbursed through a simple process known as Small Estate Administration.
The court must check the will to see if it complies with New York laws. If it does not, it is discarded and the court will appoint an estate administrator in place of the executor.
If there is no will and you wish to take the responsibility of becoming the personal representative of the deceased, then you also have to file a petition to the probate court for this cause. When accepted by the court and family as the executor or estate administrator, you will be awarded a document known as Letters Testamentary which authorizes you to commence your roles, i.e. probating the estate.
Roles of the personal representative during probate
The will executor and estate administrator are collectively known as the personal representative of the decedent. He or she is responsible for:
- Initiating probate by filing the petition to the probate court
- Notifying the family of the deceased and all interested parties about the commencement of probate
- Taking inventory of all assets held in the decedent’s name.
- Creating a checking account from which expenses will be paid
- Settling funeral expenses, court fees and attorney charges, estate debts and tax from the account
- Disbursing the assets left over after the preceding step has been completed
- Closing the estate.
Why it is important to hire a probate attorney near you 10027
Probate is legal
Hardly would anyone who is not a legal practitioner have in depth knowledge regarding the laws of their state. Probate is a legal matter and is influenced by individual state laws. As you would need to put these laws into consideration while filing paperwork, filling tax return forms and carrying out your probate duties, it is important having legal guidance from a probate attorney 10027 NYC in order not to make costly mistakes. Your attorney will help break down any legal jargon you come across and help you understand better the intent of the will.
Probate goes on more smoothly
How complex and lengthy the New York probate can get can never be overemphasized. Less valuable estates can be closed within a few months but more complex ones can take a year or more, and the beneficiaries cannot inherit until probate rounds up. When a New York probate attorney is involved and helps you execute your roles, the whole process is sped up with fewer complications. Out of experience, mistakes are avoided and the attorney will highlight the best possible steps to take at each given point.
While acting as the executor, the family members may accuse you of illegal practices. If not handled rightly, you may end up being sentenced and paying fines. Having an attorney working with you ensures you’re always on the right side of the law and will mediate between you and the family. Your probate attorney would also step in when there are squabbles among family members, resolving such conflicts before they escalate into serious litigation which can prolong probate all the more.
At our probate law firm NYC, we understand the grief and sadness that follows the death of a loved one. Coupled with this, probate becomes even more traumatic. And that is why our aim is to get the stress off your shoulders. We do not only play an advisory role, but would work actively with you to execute your roles. Call our office to speak with Probate Attorney 10027 NYC.