Probate Lawyer: What is Probate and How Does it Work?

Probate Lawyer Explains the Probate Process

Once a person passes, their estate will go to probate. Probate is the process by which a will is validated. If the deceased prepared no will, then that person is considered to have died “intestate” and their estate will be distributed according to state laws. The latter scenario can leave families stripped of their deceased’s assets due to poor preparation.

A probate lawyer from Davidson Law Group helps families prepare for the passing of a loved one so that all of their affairs will be taken care of beforehand. With the help of a probate lawyer, executors of the will (people named to carry out the directives written in the will) can more easily and efficiently complete their duties, too. Because probate laws are largely dictated by the individual state in which a person passes, hiring a probate lawyer who knows the state’s rules thoroughly can significantly decrease the stress of enduring probate.

Here, Davidson Law Group offers more information on how probate works and what you can expect from the process with a probate lawyer by your side.

The Probate Process

As we have mentioned, the probate laws are going to be different from state to state, but they all follow the same general trends. Here is an overview of what to expect.

Authenticate the Will, Appoint Executor

What’s important here is that the judge verifies that the document is the most recent and up-to-date version of the will. Once the will has been authenticated and shown to be current, the judge will identify the executor named in the will – but only if the will named one. Otherwise, the court will likely appoint the deceased’s next of kin. It will be up to the executor to fulfill the wishes laid out in the will.

Locate Assets and Creditors

Once an executor is named, probate will locate the assets of the deceased and notify outstanding creditors of the deceased either directly or by publishing a notice in the newspaper to alert unknown creditors. The executor will also be expected to pay outstanding bills and file the taxes of the deceased. This process can be particularly tedious and is one area where a probate lawyer can offer some very useful assistance.

Disburse Assets as Dictated

Once the finances of the deceased have been taken care of, a probate lawyer will help the executor oversee the fulfillment of the distribution of assets as laid out in the will.

Get Help from a Davidson Law Group Probate Lawyer

While the probate process may seem relatively simple and streamlined here, there are a few ways that it can become complicated. Family members are able to contest the validity of a will if they feel it was made under duress or if the deceased was not of sound mind when it was drafted. Other complications arise when multiple executors begin disagreeing over the distribution of assets or how best to carry out the wishes in a will.

In these cases, having a skilled probate lawyer by your side can make things significantly easier for you. And when you choose a probate lawyer from Davidson Law Group, you get the best in estate law in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. For more information on probate or how you can set up your own will, set up a free consultation with Davidson Law Group today.