Your Orlando Probate Attorney
What exactly is probate?
Probate is not something you are probably familiar with unless you have had a loved one pass. Probate simply is the court-supervised procedure for locating and gathering your personal assets once you have passed. After they have been gathered, it handles paying any debts owed from these assets. Finally, probate handles the distribution of your remaining assets to the beneficiaries you have selected. These are beneficiaries you designated in your last will and testament. This can also include your heirs, as determined by Florida law if you pass without a will. Having a local, Orlando Probate Attorney help you through this process is critical.
Is probate necessary?
The answer is yes. Probate must happen in order to pass the ownership of assets titled to you. Probate is necessary for these assets to pass to your beneficiaries or heirs. It is also required in order to wind up your financial affairs and make payment to
any creditors. If you pass with a valid will, probate will determine who handles this process on your behalf. Probate, when you have a will, also handles who you specifically name as your beneficiaries. Finally, it handles the percentages and terms of transfer of the title to your assets and gives directions to the individuals who have been entrusted with the custody of your minor children.
How does one benefit from avoiding probate?
While you personally may not see the benefit of avoiding probate, your estate, after you pass, will benefit. If you avoid lengthy probate you will significantly lower the costs associated with administering your estate and, in many occurrences, will allow the trustee to carry out your wishes without the hassle of delay as a result of court intervention. Another advantage is avoiding probate in multiple states if you have property outside of your home state. Due to the fact that real estate is deeded in the state in which its located, in some form or another, a probate administration is required in each state in which you hold real estate. Transferring the possession of your real estate, wherever it is located, to your revocable living trust while you are still alive can avoid such burdensome endeavors.
Is probate a lengthy process or can it be short?
This is a hard question to answer because each probate administration is unique and the amount of time it takes to complete a probate administration will depend on the individual circumstances. Some issues that can lengthen the time of a probate administration include contested creditor claims, a dispute as to the validity of the will, and or the necessity for the sale of estate real property.
It is always best to seek the advice of an Orlando Probate Attorney when you have questions regarding the handling of Probate. Always feel free to reach out to our staff if you have a question.