Advantages of Probate Court
If a loved one recently passed away, you and your family may be required to go through the probate process. It is commonly thought that the probate process is complex, time-consuming and expensive. In certain situations where the estate is large and unplanned, this may be the case. This is why it is always important to plan your estate with an experienced estate planning attorney. Probate, however, can be a fairly simple, quick and inexpensive process. In fact, there may even be some benefits to the probate process.
When a Will goes through probate, it must be thoroughly reviewed and verified as valid. A Will can only be verified as valid if it has been signed by two witnesses. Validity verification ensures that the wishes of the decedent our legitimate so that they can be carried out legally and accordingly. This also gives loved ones the opportunity to contest the Will if it is believed they should have been included.
Often times when a person passes away, they have some unpaid debts owed to creditors. Without probate it would be difficult for debt collectors to obtain the money and for the family to repay these debts. Probate allows for the executor of the estate to give notice to creditors. They then have a legal period of time in which they can collect the necessary debts. This can also be beneficial, because within the probate court, there is a statute of limitations on claims that creditors can make.
Resolution of Disputes
People can act and respond irrationally when emotions are running high. The time when a person’s estate is distributed is known to elicit disputes, usually because of disagreements in the Will and high emotions. Disputes are especially high when a family handles a distribution themselves. Conversely, families tend to behave better during probate because they must go before the courts and usually must honor the estate plan in place. In the case that there are disputes, a judge may arrange for a mediation to find a solution.
Transfer of Assets
When assets are handled outside of probate, there is a chance that some may be overlooked or not properly transferred to the designated beneficiaries. Probate allows for a legal and official overview of assets and a relatively quick transfer to their designated beneficiaries. This is the case even when there is no Will in place, given the legal guidelines that must be followed. In addition, when complexities arise, such as settlement or divorce, the court and an attorney will work to keep assets separate and determine the proper designations.
Speak with an Attorney
Grieving the loss of a loved one while enduring the probate process can be a challenge regardless of how simple probate may be. It may be helpful to seek the help of an experienced probate attorney from Legal Sweeney. They can help you and your loved ones sort through affairs and ensure your legal rights and interests are upheld.