Probate is simply a court-supervised process that authenticates a last will and testament. The probate process makes sure to locate the decedent’s assets, to pay final taxes and debts and to distribute any remaining assets to the beneficiaries.
The process of probating a will is somewhat complex, which is why most people choose to work with an attorney. Here’s what you should expect.
Probating a will: The first steps
To start with, you will need to find out if the decedent had a valid will. If so, then the individual appointed to be the executor will be able to probate it.
Every probate court has a list of documents and records that have to be included with a will when you file for probate. Your attorney will help you collect those documents and records, so that your submission is complete.
Your attorney will also help you find all the assets that belong to the estate so that a list of those assets can be provided to the court upon request. After this, you or the executor will proceed through the steps of probate and eventually distribute any remaining assets to the beneficiaries.
Completing probate isn’t always straightforward, and there may be complex issues that you have to deal with as the executor. Fortunately, your attorney can help you through the whole process so that you are prepared to file for probate and can complete the process without any errors. Our site has more information on filing for probate and what you should expect if you have been appointed as an executor.