For many families, there’s a tremendous sense of relief when the probate process is finally over. This is not just because of the sense of finality that it gives them, but it is also because the process can be so taxing. There are so many different components of probate that can go wrong or create challenges and conflict. Many probate problems CA probate attorneys deal with can be solved before they start.
In many cases, such issues are self-inflicted or made worse by not addressing them quickly and appropriately. One of the things that can often help with these probate problems is working with a California probate attorney who understands common problems and how to avoid or address them.
There are a variety of issues that can occur through the probate process. Some of these are more familiar and common, while others may be much rarer and more unique to your situation. Some of the most common probate problems include:
A: The probate process is formulated to ensure that a person’s estate is first used to pay off anything that they may owe before the remainder is distributed to the beneficiaries. Typically, the executor or administrator of the will first pays off any outstanding debts or liabilities that the deceased has. This may require selling off part of the estate to cover those expenses. They will also need to see that any relevant taxes are paid. Only once that is done will the rest of the estate be distributed.
A: One of the main benefits that a probate lawyer provides is helping families navigate all the challenges that arise in the probate process. The courts will see that probate gets done eventually. This can often be a tumultuous process, though, without someone who can guide it along while understanding the laws and nuances of what needs to occur.
A probate lawyer can be that guide and help families smooth out any issues that arise. They can do this by both helping with proper planning ahead of time that foresees and addresses potential problems as well as by helping in the process to address any problems that emerge. Some of the things that they can help with include:
A: Probate litigation can be one of the messiest things that can occur during the probate process. In most cases, it happens because someone takes issue with the will. In many cases, this can be avoided by putting together a proper estate plan early on. However, changes made later on are more likely to get challenged. It’s important to be careful and thorough when those decisions are made.
Some of the more common issues that lead to litigation are claims that the will is invalid because of:
A: It is possible to avoid probate, or at least much of probate, but it requires thorough planning ahead of time. The most effective way of doing this is for a person to set up a living trust before they die. Assets that are placed in the trust are effectively shielded from the probate process and aren’t subject to it. While the person is living, they can continue using the assets as they please. When they die, the assets will be managed according to their wishes as described in the trust.
Sometimes, things happen that make a messy probate process unavoidable. In most cases, though, the mess can be avoided by working with an experienced probate lawyer. They understand the source of a lot of common problems and how to quickly account for them and adjust.
There can be a lot of unexpected issues that show up throughout the probate process. For a lawyer who’s helped many families through the probate, these things aren’t unfamiliar. A probate attorney can help reduce delays, work through disputes, and smooth out what can otherwise be a rather bumpy process. If you want to ensure that your probate process avoids as many challenges as possible, contact Sweeney Probate Law today.