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What is Probate?

 

Probate is a court process that your estate will go through after you pass away. The probate court will distribute your estate and make decisions regarding your estate.

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Many of our clients come to us without an understanding of probate or having had a bad experience with the probate court and wanting to keep their estate out of probate.

If you die without a written estate plan, your estate must go through probate before your money can be distributed to your heirs. Where will your money go? It will follow the intestacy laws of your state.

If you die with a will, your estate will also go through probate.

The only way to avoid probate is to have a trust and fully fund your trust. This means that you need to put all of your assets into your trust during your lifetime.

While probate will make decisions and divide your assets, many people wish to avoid probate because it can take years to complete and the attorney fees and court costs can take a sizeable chunk out of your estate.

Probate proceedings are also publicwhich means that anyone can view your assets and your decisions set out in your will.

We help our clients look at all of their options regarding their estate plan. Because of the issues associated with probate, many of our clients opt to utilize a Living Trust for their estate plan.

If you have questions about which estate plan is the right choice for you and your family, contact us today.

We can walk you through the differences between the laws of the state, a will and a trust.

Contact us today to help you get the right documents in place or to update your current estate plan. We will plan so that you don’t have to worry about your future.

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Contact us today with all your legal needs!

The post What is Probate? appeared first on Rickard & Associates.

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