Guide to the Probate Process
This is a procedure that is meant to settle the affairs of a deceased person that is mostly pushed by the courts. It aims at ensuring that the estate settles its obligations and that its assets are distributed justly according to the law. Th court will make sure that they equally divide the estate to all the eligible beneficiaries. There are certain assets that will not be included in the probate. Some of these policies include insurance policies and those assets that are funded by a trust. Probate assets include real estate owned by the individual, investment accounts as well as solely owned businesses. The probate process will consider all the assets that do not have a designated tag. It is for this reason that you need to always have a will.
The beneficiaries will always be given around four years to file a probate. You will learn that a good number of beneficiaries may not be sure of exactly what they want. It actually takes time and energy. It also takes a lot of both trust and disclosure. The execution of this entire process might last for a period between six and eighteen months. In case of any family feud, the process will usually take a longer period. There needs to be total accountability in this process. There is also a possibility of a beneficiary contesting a trust. As such it will also be necessary for you to freeze the assets. This can be achieved through having a lien placed on the property. This will mean that the trustee cannot sell or refinance the at least for the period of the lien. You can also place a temporary restraining order or even an injunction. This will make sure that the assets within these trusts will not be susceptible to wastage.
The financial obligations of the deceased will always be settled through a probate process. Once this is done, the property will be divided in accordance to the wishes of the deceased. The executor will be indicated at this stage. It is within the rights of the beneficiaries to contest this particular choice. The will has to be verified. These probate cases may actually last for quite a while. With this window of time, more creditors will be allowed to come forward. You need a plan to avoid a probate. This makes the whole process quite easy and fast. Come up with a trust to allow you move all the property to it. You will then convert the accounts to pay-on-death. This needs to extend to establishing a joint tenancy. Always get to understand estate laws. If you want to challenge the will you are advised to get a good probate attorney.