Losing a close family member is difficult under any circumstances, but having to settle your newly deceased relative’s financial affairs can seem especially daunting. Being named in a family member’s will as the personal representative of his or her estate can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, you are honored that you are the person your family member trusted the most to be in charge of their estate after their death, and you want to fulfill their requests to whatever extent you can. On the other hand, all the paperwork of probate can consume a lot of your time. The best solution is to hire a California legal document assistant to prepare the probate forms for your family member’s estate so that you can have peace of mind without having to spend big piles of money on a probate lawyer.
When Do You Need a Probate Lawyer?
Probate is the process where the court assesses the value of the deceased person’s estate, executes the deceased person’s will if there is one, and gives creditors a chance to collect debts from the estate. At the end of probate, the estate settles, and the beneficiaries receive their inheritance. In the context of probate law, the estate is all of the deceased person’s property except assets that the person placed in trusts while he or she was alive. Most of the responsibility for following the steps of probate falls on the personal representative of the estate, also known as the executor of the will, who is usually a close family member of the deceased person. Even though it requires a lot of work, probate is mostly routine and is usually free of surprises and disputes. Most probate cases take 12 months or less.
In the following situations, though, it is a good idea to hire a lawyer for probate:
- There are multiple versions of the will and no agreement about which one is the correct one.
- The value of the estate is very high.
- The deceased person’s debts are very large, to the point that you will need to sell a lot of the estate’s property in order to repay them.
- There is disagreement about the deceased person’s debts.
You Might Not Even Need to Go Through Probate
Multimillion-dollar estates usually require a probate lawyer, but for medium-sized estates, you can usually satisfy the requirements of probate on your own or with the help of a legal document assistant. California law allows estates of modest size to bypass many of the requirements of probate and to settle through simplified probate alternatives. As of 2020, estates valued at $166,250.000 or less are eligible for one or more of California’s simplified probate alternatives for small estates.
A People’s Choice Makes Full Probate Painless
A registered legal document assistant can help you satisfy all the requirements for the probate of your family member’s estate for an affordable price. Contact A People’s Choice and save money while completing probate in a year or less. Call us today at 800-747-2780
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