What is Probate?
When a person dies, their property (the estate) must be dealt with in accordance with their will, or if they don’t have a will, the intestacy rules. This usually involves distributing the estate to the beneficiaries named in the will or, if there is no will, to the person’s next of kin. The process of handling a deceased person’s estate is commonly known as probate and administration.
Who Can Be the Administrator or Executor?
If the deceased left a valid will, the executor named in the will is responsible for applying for a grant of probate and administering the estate. If there is no valid will, the administrator is responsible for administering the estate. The role of executor or administrator can be carried out by a professional probate practitioner, such as a solicitor, but it can also be done by a family member or friend of the deceased.Call (631) 597-0080 now For more info
What is the Process of Getting an Estate Out of Probate?
The court must issue a grant of probate before an executor can deal with the estate. A grant of administration may be required if there is no valid will. Once a grant has been obtained, the Executor or Administrator can then start to distribute the estate in accordance with the terms of the will or intestacy rules. Distributing an estate can be a complex and time-consuming process, so it’s important to get professional help if you’re unsure about anything. An attorney or lawyer can advise you on the best way to proceed and can help with the practicalities of applying for a grant and administering the estate. Not all lawyers are trained and equipped to deal with estates, so much sure you choose one who is personable, willing to take time to explain things well and someone who has the needed experience.
What are the Responsibilities of an Executor or Administrator?
If you’re named as an executor in a will, you don’t have to accept the role if you don’t want to. However, if you do decide to take on the responsibility, you should be aware that there are certain legal duties and responsibilities that come with the role. The executor is responsible for ensuring that the wishes of the deceased are carried out as far as possible. This includes locating and collating all of the deceased’s assets, paying any debts and liabilities that are owed, and distributing the estate to the beneficiaries in accordance with the terms of the will or intestacy rules.
The executor is also responsible for applying for a grant of probate (if there is a valid will) or a grant of administration (if there is no valid will). Once the grant has been obtained, the executor can then start to administer the estate. This involves taking control of the assets, paying any debts and liabilities, and distributing the estate to the beneficiaries in accordance with the terms of the will or intestacy rules.
The executor is also responsible for ensuring that all tax liabilities are paid before the estate is distributed. This includes any inheritance tax that may be due.
Why is having good representation with the Probate Court is Important?
It’s important to note that the role of executor is not an easy one and it can be a time-consuming and stressful process. If you’re considering taking on the role, you should make sure that you’re up for the task and that you’re comfortable with the responsibilities that come with it. If you’re not sure whether you want to take on the role of executor, or if you’re unsure about anything, you should seek legal advice from a solicitor. They will be able to advise you on the best course of action and can help with the practicalities of administering the estate.
What Action Should I Take?
It’s important to be meticulous and handle the details of probate with care. If the estate is of a meaningful size the small percentage charged by a knowledgeable attorney will take away any concerns or worries you may face. Interview at the attorney to make sure you have a good relationship and by all means, get a referral from someone who has been through this process before. Call today with your questions: (631) 597-0080