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Probate and Trust Administration

Get Your Free Legal Strategy Session Today!

Let us help you with your Probate and Trust Administration Matters

Don't go another day with administering a probate estate or trust alone! Call us now for your free legal strategy session to discuss your probate matter!

Call: (707) 653-5187

Many people ask, What is probate? and Why should I care about it? In a nutshell, probate is a court process that distributes a person’s estate to others after their passing. Probate proceedings are also used to close out the business affairs of a decedent. This includes paying off a decedent’s final expenses and household bills and settling claims with creditors and others.

If a decedent owned real property in their individual name outside of a trust or other title instrument, probating an estate is necessary to ensure that a future owner has marketable title to the property.

In some cases, probate proceedings may not be necessary. Some examples include bank accounts, retirement accounts, and other financial accounts that designate beneficiaries to whom assets will be transferred upon a person’s death. If a decedent held assets under a certain amount, those assets may be transferred without initiating probate by completing an affidavit of small estate. If assets and property are held in a valid trust, those assets are usually transferred according to the terms of the trust agreement, and probate is not necessary.

We can help you navigate through these tough and often stressful issues. If you are trying to go through this situation alone, give us a call today so we can schedule a legal strategy session to assist you!

Common FAQ About Probate and Estate Administration

The necessity of initiating a probate of decedent’s real property will be determined based on how title to the property is held and the value of the property.

Properties that were owned by decedent in joint tenancy with another individual or held in a living trust for example will generally not need to be probated.

Also summary transfer procedures may be available for properties of modest value. Real Property worth less than $50,000.00 may be transferred by an affidavit procedure. Also if the total gross value of decedent’s property (personal and real property) does not exceed $150,000.00, summary probate procedures can be used to avoid a formal probate of real property.

To determine if your real property needs to be probated, please contact our office to schedule a legal strategy session. Our office can walk you through the probate process.

In many cases, bank accounts with “Pay on Death” designations and 401K, IRA and other investment accounts with beneficiary designations will not need to be probated.
The short answer is if you did not sign up for the debt, you are not personally responsible to pay a decedent’s debts incurred when he/she was living. As an executor/administrator you will be tasked with paying decedent’s final debts and expenses. The order of paying debts and expenses can be complicated and should be done with the advice of an attorney.

Need help with your probate and trust matters? Send us a message to get your free legal strategy session!