If you have to go through probate, you will likely want to work with an attorney. When you choose your attorney, you'll have to set up an initial appointment to discuss the case.
To get everything ready for this meeting, you should first educate yourself on what you need to bring. To meet with the attorney and work on the estate, you will need to be the person who was named as the executor or representative for the estate.
Once assigned that role, your attorney will need a few things from you. These items include:
- The decedent's estate plan
- Information about the deceased
- Information on the decedent's assets
- Information about the liabilities of the estate
You should prepare information for the attorney including your name and address, work phone, home phone, email address and relationship to the deceased. You will also need to bring the name of the deceased, their date of birth, their Social Security number and information on the estate plan. If there is a will, you should bring this to the meeting. Provide a copy, not an original document.
If your loved one had trusts set up, you should also bring copies of the trusts' paperwork to the attorney. Along with this, bring family information about those who have been left behind by the deceased. This could include grandchildren, spouses, children, siblings or parents.
These are great items to have prepared for your attorney during the first consultation, and it will start getting the case moving in the right direction. Your attorney will give you more information on what they need from you ahead of the appointment, so you have time to collect it.