If you need an experienced Probate Lawyer Wayzata, look no further than Schindel Segal Attorneys | Advocates | Advisors. We aim to make sure your experience is smooth as we walk you through the process of settling your deceased loved one’s estate or asset. To get started, it’s helpful to learn about the process, and here are answers to some of the frequently asked questions about the probate process.
What is probate?
Probate is a legal process that makes sure that the will or assets of someone who dies are distributed correctly. During the probate process, a court will oversee the distribution of the deceased’s property. The probate process also includes:
- Settling disputes.
- Paying any debts and taxes
- Collecting all property and assets to be distributed.
When do I need probate?
Probate is not something everyone will need. You don’t need probate if there is no property or assets “stuck” in the deceased’s name. But probate may be required to help recover any debts owed by the deceased. You need probate to clear title to bonds and stocks, land, large savings, bank, and loan accounts. You need probate to resolve any dispute about the deceased’s will and settle any disagreements between heirs who feel they are entitled to the assets left behind.
What happens during the probate process?
The probate process can be complex, but with an experienced Wayzata probate Lawyer, it can be much more straightforward to digest. The first step is appointing an executor to handle the deceased’s affairs. The executor is usually the deceased’s child, spouse, or another close relative. However, a bank or lawyer can be selected if no executor to appoint.
Next, the deceased’s will and assets are handed over to the court. The executor or lawyer must provide the court with an asset inventory. If assets need to be sold to cover some expenses, the executor is responsible for this. Creditors are given written notice of the death and must bring forth any debts or claims within three months. Heirs in the will also be notified and located. Finally, the court will ensure all debts are settled and decide how the deceased’s assets will be distributed.
How long does the probate process take?
In general, the probate process takes months or even years. Factors determining how long the process will take include the estate’s size, any disputes or misunderstandings among the heirs regarding the division of the assets, and if taxes or debts are still owed. If smaller assets or estates are involved, you may get this settled quickly.
How soon can I start the probate process?
Generally, you can start the probate process whenever you’re ready to move things forward. Keep in mind that there are certain circumstances where beginning the probate process too early may expose the estate to creditor claims. Once you open a probate case, creditors can stake their claim.
For more details about the probate process, please get in touch with the Schindel Segal Attorneys | Advocates | Advisors at 952-358-7400 to schedule a free consultation.