After loosing a loved one, most people end up being devastated and find it very difficult to perform certain important tasks, especially the ones related to the deceased’s estate. Also, if they eventually take up the task to open a probate estate, they may need assistance with the process and this is main reason why a probate lawyer should be hired.
Before we go deep into what probate lawyers do, let’s talk about who a probate lawyer is?
Who is a probate Lawyer?
As an appointed executor of a Will or as a beneficiary of a particular estate who is to settle the affairs of the decedent, you may need to hire a state-licensed attorney, someone who would guide and assist you with the entire probate process from start to finish. That state-licensed attorney is who we refer to as a probate lawyer and most times, their involvement in the probate process would solely depend on the complexity and value of that particular estate they’re to handle.
What do probate Lawyers do?
Helping with the whole probate process can be considered as the main purpose of a probate lawyer but what exactly are they supposed to help you out with. Some of the basic tasks that a probate lawyer is supposed to carry out while dealing with a particular estate are as follows:
- Identification and collection of assets
- Retitling and distributing assets to the beneficiaries
- Collecting proceeds from life insurance policies
- Obtaining appraisals of properties
- Preparation of all court documents and filing them
- Settling disputes
- Managing the estate checking account
- Handling overall finances
- Resolving income task issues
Once you finally hire a probate lawyer who is qualified and can easily perform all of the duties listed above, then opening a probate estate either via the formal method or the informal method wouldn’t be a hard task for you. There might only be a handful of probate lawyers around you but then how do you know the qualified ones amongst them? This should lead us to the next question.
How do I know a good probate Lawyer?
Another hard task you may encounter while handling a deceased’s estate is finding a probate lawyer who would totally be willing to help you out with the probate process but this is just one of the features of a qualified probate lawyer. Some of the main features of good and qualified probate lawyer are as follows:
- Willing to help at any point in time
- Can find multiple ways to solve any issue with the estate
- Effective in communication
- Always honest with you
- Offers a reasonable fee
- Very experienced with the probate process
- Doesn’t leave anything untouched
The moment you get a probate attorney who can assist in accomplishing the above tasks, then opening a probate estate and handling it in accordance to the deceased Will will not be stressful at all.
How much does it cost to hire a good probate Lawyer?
Most of the probate lawyers around where you stay or where the deceased passed on may have several things to be kept in consideration before hiring them and this may affect the cost of hiring one. Just know that the cost of hiring a probate Lawyer can vary due to several circumstances and some of them are:
- The complexity of the estate
- Value of the estate
- Potential problems that may be encountered due to controversial relationships between the beneficiaries and the deceased.
- Originality of the deceased’s Will or Trust because this can determine if the probate process would be formal or rather informal. Also note that the informal probate process is cheap and doesn’t take much time unlike the formal process.
A probate lawyer should not be too cost to hire but note that if you eventually find an affordable one, you can either pay them using the flat payment system or you can just pay them per hour, it all depends on your agreement with the probate lawyer.
Need an estate planning attorney?
If you want to plan your estate, and you need the services of an experienced estate planning attorney, please, don’t hesitate to contact us. Also, if you need help with updating your estate plan, you can contact our office as well. We boast of competent estate planning attorney who can help in creating an estate plan that suits your needs.