If you were chosen by someone as their executor or personal representative, you need to have a thorough understanding of the probate process. If not, you may face a lot of challenges and lengthen an already long process.
The best way to understand probate is to speak with Probate attorneys in San Antonio. Sitting at home and reading things on Google will not help you much in court. Nevertheless, here are the steps involved in the probate process.
The steps in a probate procedure
File a petition.
One must file a Petition Of Probation regardless of whether the deceased has a will or not. The petition basically conveys that the person who has passed away has appointed you as their executor or personal representative. You may need to include a few more pieces of information. Once the petition gets approved, you can move onto the next step.
You and your attorney need to prepare appropriate notices and send them to each person listed as a beneficiary, creditor, or heir in the deceased person’s will. In some states, you may also need to publish a Public Notice in the newspaper where the person lived.
The first hearing is held only to validate the will and determine the executor, administrator, or personal representative. This hearing may take place weeks after filing the petition, depending on court availability.
Inventorying the estate.
Inventorying the estate refers to finding out the properties and assets owned by the person on the day they died and creating a list. This is done to keep a record of their estate and is often filed with the court to ensure the assets are contained in court records.
Distributing assets and paying debts.
The most complex and time-consuming part of the probate process is paying the creditors and distributing the remaining assets among the beneficiaries. You will probably need to go through checkbooks, emails, and bank accounts and determine whether the estate is enough to pay off all the debts. After the debts are paid, only then do the beneficiaries receive their part.
Closing the estate.
After paying the debts and distributing the assets, it is time to close the estate. You will need to submit a financial report containing the bank statements, bills, and payments. After the court accepts this report, the estate is formally closed.
These are the basic steps involved in probate. If you have additional questions about how things are done in probate or need an attorney to take care of the legalities, contact a law firm today.
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