Probate is the legal procedure via which an individual’s Will, assets, and things pass following the individual’s death. Probate lawyers, also known as estate attorneys or trust lawyers, are specialist legal professionals who can assist you with this procedure. Today’s blog post will help you learn about probate. Let’s begin!
Who are Probate Lawyers?
Probate lawyers (also known as estate attorneys) assist non-lawyer clients in fulfilling their roles as estate administrators, personal representatives, or executors. They help them as much or as little as they need during the probate process. The probate procedure includes paying the deceased’s obligations and distributing the estate’s assets following the Will or state law.
Probate lawyers, also known as estate attorneys or trust lawyers, are specialist legal professionals who can assist you with this procedure. These attorneys can help with any aspect of the probate procedure.
This includes the following, depending on the condition of the Will and the individual’s assets:
- Demonstrating Will’s validity
- Inventorying the deceased’s possessions
- Appraising the dead person’s property
- Settling unpaid liens and taxes
- The distribution of a dead person’s property
Distinction Between an Estate Planning Lawyer and a Probate Lawyer
Although probate and estate planning attorneys work in the same field of estate law, there is one significant distinction.
- After a person dies, a probate attorney handles the estate administration. They may even function as executors or administrators of an estate if the person does not have anybody else to name.
- An estate planning attorney draughts Wills, trusts, living trusts, and powers of attorney for live clients. They assist families in eldercare planning. Their services can assist customers in lowering inheritance tax in Australia.
A probate lawyer can also be an estate planning lawyer. They can do both, or they can specialise in one of the two.
What Does a Probate Lawyer Do?
A probate attorney can do a wide variety of activities. What the probate lawyer performs will depend on what the executor or administrator requires, whether or not the deceased had a Will, how complicated the estate is, whether or not there are any legal challenges from beneficiaries, and other issues with the estate property.
In the Presence of Will –
Suppose the deceased individual had a legitimate, signed testament when they died; in that case, a probate lawyer might get retained to advise the administrator through probate procedure following the terms of the Will.
If a beneficiary feels the Will is defective or under the influence of another, the probate attorney may represent a party in a probate action. Perhaps someone might like to protest being written out of a will. A Will might get contested for various reasons.
When the Will doesn’t exist –
When someone dies without leaving a valid, written Will, they are considered to have died “intestate.” When this occurs, state inheritance rules govern who inherits. For example, depending on their state’s intestate rules, a surviving spouse may get all or half of their deceased husband’s property. These laws might differ significantly.
It is vital to remember that both the probate lawyer and the estate administrator are required by state intestacy rules to distribute property. State law controls the division of estate assets, regardless of what the deceased individual said while living or how much money particular family members require.
In this case, a probate lawyer may assist a loved one in petitioning the court to be appointed as the estate administrator via a letter of administration. They may even be employed after the individual has been appointed administrator by the probate court judge.
What is The Job of a Probate Lawyer?
People hire a probate lawyer to give legal guidance. They might also be employed to do any of the following jobs. When the executor lives out of state, they frequently rely on the local probate attorney and their staff for assistance. Some law companies specialise in offering complete services in just this situation.
- Find, inventory, and safeguard the decedent’s estate, which includes the decedent’s savings and bank accounts, personal belongings (referred to as real property), automobiles, real estate, and more.
- Determine and collect a life insurance policy.
- Obtain valuations for the decedent’s assets.
- Keep track of the estate’s finances.
- Obtain a tax account or collaborate with an in-house account to compile the deceased person’s final income tax and estate tax filings.
Do You Need a Probate Lawyer?
It is only sometimes essential to retain the services of a probate lawyer. The probate court may be beneficial to executors and administrators. Before you employ an attorney, consider the following:
- Have you ever managed an estate’s probate?
- Can the estate be dispersed without going through probate?
- Is your state’s probate process pretty simple?
- Will the family members mentioned in the Will get along?
- Is the estate’s money adequate to satisfy its debts?
If you answer yes to any or all of these questions, you might not need to contact a probate attorney. If an issue arises later, you may always employ one.
Benefits of Hiring a Probate Lawyer
- Probate may be complicated, especially if the deceased had a large estate. When probate is over, the executor or administrator must file a final account of all their estate-related operations. It contains a complete accounting of all received assets and bills paid. It is critical to keep precise records of sales earnings and losses and the ultimate distribution of any residual cash.
- A probate lawyer protects the executor or administrator regarding these documents. If no counsel is appointed, the executor or administrator bears full responsibility for any errors in these papers. A qualified probate lawyer will ensure the accounting is done correctly, often working with an outside accounting firm in more intricate instances.
- When dealing with the estate, a probate lawyer also provides objectivity. The death of a family or loved one may be difficult for those close to the person. A probate lawyer can deliver a fair and unbiased judgment in any conflicts that may emerge by stepping aside from the heightened emotions that others are experiencing.
Probate Consultants: Get Your Probate Will Sorted with Zero Hassle
Whether you need assistance administering someone’s Will after they have passed away or want advice on protecting your rights, hiring a qualified probate lawyer is essential for navigating these complex legal matters confidently. A good probate lawyer can provide sound legal counsel while helping you understand every aspect of managing estates and trusts so that everything runs smoothly for everyone involved. So, if you need assistance with any legal matter concerning estates or trusts, contact our experienced professionals at Probate Consultants today! We’re here ready and willing to offer our expertise, so don’t hesitate—to reach out now!