What You Need To Know About Probate Settlement
In the event a family member passes away without a Will, the probate court often oversees the disposition of the deceased person’s wealth. The purpose is to ensure the fair distribution of assets to the appropriate heirs and beneficiaries. The probate settlement also makes sure that outstanding debts and taxes are paid from the estate.
It’s important to understand that not all assets must pass through probate court. Estates considered small might not require supervision. Assets such as jointly-owned property, community property, and designated benefits such as life insurance policies are generally not reviewed. But substantial estates that lack legal directives undergo strict legal scrutiny. The process usually entails the following.
File an existing Will with the court, if applicable.
Petition the court to appoint an executor in the absence of a Will.
File “Letters of Testamentary” with the executor.
Publish the proceedings publicly.
Make an accounting of all assets.
Secure a distribution order from the court.
Gaining a probate settlement can be a difficult and expensive process without the help of an experienced attorney. And, missteps can prove costly. If you recently lost a loved one and are concerned about a probate settlement, call the Bray Law Firm today.