What Is Probate? Everything You Need to Know About the Process

a probate lawyer working

The last thing anyone wants to deal with when a loved one passes away is probate.

Losing a loved one is already one of the most difficult things a person can experience, especially when it’s unexpected. This is the time to process complex emotions and regain a sense of normalcy. However, the probate court can often complicate things.

That is why it’s important to understand the probate process to spare your heirs from it. Avoiding probate can help transfer assets to beneficiaries quickly while ensuring family privacy.

Today, we’re discussing everything you need to know about the probate process according to estate planning and probate attorneys in Chico.

What Is Probate?

Probate is a legal procedure when a person leaves their assets for distribution after their death. It is the legal administration of a deceased person’s will or assets (if they didn’t leave a will).

A court that specializes in probate, wills, estates, conservatorships, etc., oversees the distribution of these assets upon a person’s death. These usually include their money, real estate, bank accounts, financial investments, and other possessions.

What Is The Probate Process?

When someone dies, the probate court reviews their assets and property. The court is responsible for the final decision regarding the distribution of assets to beneficiaries.

The deceased’s estate executor or attorney is usually responsible for initiating probate. It usually starts by analyzing whether the provided will is a legalized document.

Once the will is validated, the court assigns someone to oversee if the deceased’s debts are paid first. Later, the remaining estate is transferred to the deserving parties. The will authorizes the executor to administer the assets to the beneficiaries involved

If the deceased didn’t leave a will, further administrative proceedings follow for property division. The probate law then oversees asset distribution by first assigning an administrator. They follow the probate judge’s instructions on administering the estate to their next of kin.

How Does The Probate Process Work?

Every will and estate is different. This is why the probate process can vary depending on the guidelines left in the will. The beneficiaries, creditors, and assets can also impact the process, especially if there are any disputes between the executor and beneficiaries or creditors.

However, the basic process includes:

  1. Collecting complete details of the assets as well as debt.
  2. Applying for grant probate.
  3. Completing inheritance tax return.
  4. Paying any other due taxes.
  5. Repaying the deceased’s debts.
  6. Administering the estate and assets according to the wishes and guidelines left in the will.

a close-up shot of a wooden gavel

Our probate lawyers at the Law Offices of Ron Marquez will offer you legal advice and help with the probate process.

Get in touch with our will and testament lawyers in Chico today for assistance with any will, estate, and probate matters. Our team of will, trusts, and probate lawyers in Chico has years of experience to guide you through the process to ensure a favorable outcome.

Contact us today to learn more.

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