Given the tedious probate procedure involved, avoiding probate is not as easy as it seems. It can, however, be a lot less stressful with legal help from experts on estate planning. Such is why getting reliable probate attorneys is very important. Knowledge of probate law is crucial.
What is a California probate?
Probate is the legal process where the probate court sees to it that estate assets are distributed according to the last will and testament of the deceased. In the absence of any wills, a court order will distribute personal property and other assets of the estate in a manner pursuant to relevant probate laws.
When a proceeding is brought to court, the probate code will determine the wishes of the decedent, which debts owed must be paid to the creditor concerned, and the actual distribution of estate property. (In terms of probate property, discussions on real property are especially crucial when someone dies).
Why should probate proceedings be avoided?
- A probate judge, who likely does not know you or your loved one who died, will distribute assets after death. This circumstance leads to a loss of control. As a supposed heir, distributing the estate assets of the deceased is not something that you would want to be done by someone else.
- If the estate of the deceased is to be part of a probate case, several court forms must be filled out with legal supervision. Preparing numerous probate forms that must be filed in the probate court is, in itself, tedious and time-consuming. Furthermore, because of the nature and volume of probate matter brought to court, the actual proceeding could lead to further delays.
- Given the current court system, transferring property to heirs could take from six months to two years. This could also lead to unnecessary probate fees. While the estate executor will likely be a family member, there are instances when the appointed executor is not. In such a case, executors could be entitled to receive fees, on top of appraisal and court fees that must be paid.
- Since documents related to the transfer of property are filed at the courthouse, they become part of public information that can be reviewed. This means that the assets and intended beneficiaries will be up for public disclosure.
Take probate and estate administration seriously. If you are planning to create a will for you to designate an heir or appoint someone to make decisions for you when you pass away, make sure you are doing it right to ensure its validity.
Estate law is quite complex. There is so much more to the estate planning process and estate administration than simply distributing property to your heirs when you die.
For clarifications on probate and estate planning, or even on the power of attorney, assets held in trust, joint tenancy, living trust, survivorship, or the summary probate process, consult with a competent estate attorney. Get an experienced probate lawyer from a reliable law firm. Contact us at Moschetti Law Group for estate planning concerns. Call 888-664-1848 now!