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What you need to know about probate

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2021 | Estate Planning, Probate

Probate is a court process to manage the estate details of someone who dies.

Probate laws are complex and involve many factors like dealing with financial responsibilities and transferring property to heirs.

What issues does probate manage?

These court proceedings oversee many legal aspects of a deceased person’s estate, such as:

  • Determining if a valid will or trust exists
  • Appointing an estate executor or administrator
  • Designating the appropriate beneficiaries
  • Ensuring payment of any remaining financial debts
  • Calculating the value of the estate’s assets
  • Transferring property to heirs

How long does probate take?

There are many issues to address during probate. Because of the complexity of the laws, the process can take years to complete. The average timeframe is around nine months, but it can vary widely depending on the specifics of the estate.

Identifying and appraising all the assets, listing and paying creditors and ensuring proper disbursements takes time. Additionally, there are many required legal documents and filings, court appearances and other technicalities to manage.

What legal knowledge do you need to handle probate?

Dealing with an estate after someone dies is a complicated process. There are legalities regarding the validity of a will and the identification of proper beneficiaries. California laws dictate how to prioritize and pay any creditors, tax liabilities and funeral expenses. In addition, legally transferring ownership of bank accounts, investments, real estate, businesses and other assets can present complications.

Handling someone’s estate is a time-consuming process that addresses many legal issues. This responsibility demands an understanding of the legal process’s rules, regulations, documentation requirements and deadlines.