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Family Law Attorney

What is Probate?

When is probate necessary?
There are a number of circumstances when Probate will be required:
– Bank’s or building societies can request that probate is obtained before they will allow access to accounts. Each bank or building society will determine at what value they want to set the limit. Typically this limit may range from £5,000 to £30,000.
– If the deceased held stocks and shares, regardless of the value, Probate will be required before they can be transferred or liquidated.
– If the deceased owned any property, either in their sole name or as a tenant in common, Probate will be required in order to transfer ownership of the property or to sell it as part of the estate.
In some cases the deceased may have benefitted from a Trust. If so Probate will be required.
When is probate not required?
– There are instances when Probate may not be required, typically when a deceased’s assets (money and property) are worth less than £5000. However if in doubt it is worth seeking legal advice.
A professional legal organisation like Co-operative Legal Services will handle the process of Personal Representation on your behalf.
Who can apply for Probate?
You must be in possession of a Grant of Representation to give you the authority to administer and distribute the estate of the deceased.
There are 2 main types of Grant of Representation:
o The Grant of Probate, where there is a Will
o Letters of Administration, in situations where there is no Will
Where there is a Will and Probate is required then the Executor or their nominated Personal Representative would apply to the courts for the Grant of Probate.
When Probate has been provided by the Court those named in the Grant of Probate are liable for the distribution of the deceased’s estate in accordance with the wishes of the deceased as set out in a valid will.
When there is no Will (Intestacy) then the person(s) appointed to administer the estate is known as the Administrator(s). Their appointment follows the strict Rules of Intestacy, in the following order of priority:
o Surviving spouse or registered civil partner (but not common law spouses, partners or cohabitants)
o Children
o Parents
o Brothers/sisters
o Grandparents
o Uncles/aunts
If you are unsure or have any doubts about who can administer your estate, you should seek professional legal advice to determine what needs to be done next.
How do I apply for Probate/Letters of Administration?
Consider carefully whether you want to take on the responsibilities of Executor or Administrator of the estate before you make any application to the Court. These legal, tax and administrative responsibilities can be numerous and time-consuming as well as challenging. If you are in any doubt as to your abilities to undertake such a demanding task then please get in touch with a suitable legal organisation.…

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Understanding the Grounds for Probate Litigation

The administering of the decedent’s estate, as per the will, or as per the state laws, utilizes the probate process. This legal process involves settling the outstanding debts of the deceased, and dividing the remaining assets among the legal heirs. It is during this process that disputes, claims and lawsuits may arise.
After the decease of an individual, his/her estate undergoes this legal process. The court oversees the settling of the debts. The division of assets comes later. If there is a will, the administrator divides the assets according to it. In this case, legal dispute may be possible on grounds of the validity of the will.
When a potential heir faces exclusion from a will, he/she can also think of filing a claim in Florida. This is quite common. For example, a dependent minor child from a previous marriage has the right to file a claim for inclusion as an heir. Excluding such a potential heir is not acceptable in most cases.
The administration of the estate can also be a ground for probate litigation. If any or all of the beneficiaries think that the administrator is not following the terms and conditions of the will, they may file a case. Any improper activity on the part of the executor can become an issue in this regard.
Florida laws specify the division of the estate in case an individual dies intestate, i.e. without a will. The court decides on who gets what according to these laws. The spouse and descendents are the primary heirs. In case there is none, the assets can go to the parents, siblings, paternal and maternal kindred and so on as per the directives of the law.
Whatever the ground for dispute, handling Florida probate litigation requires proficiency in this specific legal domain. In-depth knowledge of the trust and probate laws of the state is the first criterion when you are looking for a legal practitioner for proper representation in a lawsuit.
Just knowledge would not suffice – probate related lawsuits could get difficult! You need a lawyer with experience in such matters. Whether you are going to challenge a will or claim your share as a potential heir, an experienced lawyer can help you formulate the right strategies and approach the matter properly.
Get in touch with a good lawyer if you are considering filing a suit related to a deceased person’s estate, to reach a resolution with ease.…

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Family Law Attorney

Tips on Hiring a Probate Lawyer

An experienced attorney can effectively aid you in avoiding problems that may arise after someone has passed on, or in instances where an individual can become incapacitated.
Probate law pertains to matters regarding the estate or will of a deceased individual, issues involving a minor, or cases in which a person has been declared mental incompetent.
The Will
A will is a document that outlines just how an individual will dispose of their personal belongings and property when they pass on.
While some wills tend to be rather simple, others can end up being very complicated, with property being dispersed between several individuals or trusts, and the custody and care of minor children being involved. In such cases, an attorney is able to provide the necessary advice to have the document concise and clear while leaving no room for argument.
These attorney’s should be called upon for use in the preparation of a trust, or an agreement in which one individual hold legal title to assets or property for the benefit of another.
While many believe that the wealthy are the only ones who benefit from a trust agreement, such is not the case. In fact, several types of agreements exist, each containing special instructions designed to assist the decedent with tax matters as well as limitations regarding how the beneficiary of the trust is able to use the property.
Legal assistants or paralegals may prepare a trust agreement or will, however only an attorney is authorized to represent a client in court. Thus, probate lawyers are required in order to try a case in court.
These cases typically do not require an elongated court time, however, hearings involving the mentally incompetent, minors, a challenge of the will, or a lawsuit involving a decedent will ultimately require that the attorney appears in front of the judge to obtain a decision on the matter.
Estate Administration
A lawyer is useful in navigating the way through the process, which at times can be rather stressful and arduous. The paperwork pertaining to the administration of an individual’s estate varies state to state. Once a person has been declared deceased, their property must pass out of their name into the names of the beneficiaries and heirs outlined in the will.
An heir is an individual who has been named as the one who will inherit the decedent’s property. A deceased individual is not able to manage their finances, and thus, the property must ultimately pass on to someone who can.…