The Probate process is the legal process that gives acknowledgment to a will. This process also appoints an executor or representative, who distributes the estate and assets to the set beneficiaries after one’s passing. It is best to consult a lawyer to decide whether or not a probate proceeding is needed. Probate proceedings are not costly nor are they drawn out.
Whether handled by probate or if assets were moved to a living during one’s lifetime, the task of administration and accounting of resources must be finished after one’s passing. A lot of states have removed the complexities from their probate process over time, so now there is less reason to use probate unless there are other well-grounded reasons to minimize the probate process. It is best to discuss this with a lawyer, but, when planning your estate, minimizing real issues that make the probate process difficult is more important than minimizing the probate process itself.
A living trust is often described as a route of estate planning that allows one to avoid the probate process upon passing. Probate is simply the court-directed process of distributing one’s estate and transferring property at your passing according to the terms of one’s will and is hardly the disaster people make it to be. There are also several types of assets that pass outside of the probate process and without the expense of a living trust, including life insurance, retirement plan continues, real estate and joint bank accounts.
A few states have mandated court fees while in other states, those fees are kept to a minimum. These fees depend on the state, the size of the estate and whether or not a will was properly drafted to avoid issues like this. To ensure your will is correct and to avoid complications, contact your lawyer at Mestayer Law Firm and discuss the best course of action.
In reality, most of the red tape associated with probate comes from the tax laws and tax documenting requirements. These filings cannot be avoided in a living trust and avoiding probate. A living trust will almost never fully avoid probate, as a plain will is needed to transfer any property that was not transferred to the trust during one’s lifespan. Assets that are passed on at the end of your life through a living trust must be moved to the trust, administered by a trustee and then transferred out to inheritors. There may be lots of fees in this process, and, usually, the costs that go with a living trust are ignored by marketers.