Probate is the legal process that oversees claims and disputes regarding a person’s estate when he/she passes away. In case the deceased person had a last will, probate would ensure its validity. It makes decisions regarding the interests of the deceased person’s heir and others who may have a financial interest or claims against the estate.
Help4You is one of the most trusted legal document services in Orange County, California that will assist you throughout the process of the probate. Our professional team will help in preparing the initial petition to the court, issuing of the letter, required publishing and the paperwork for closing allocation.
Process of Probate
The process generally includes:
- Filing a petition and giving notice to heirs and beneficiaries – The probate process starts with the filing of the petition with the probate court. In case of a will, you should admit it to the probate and appoint the executor. In case of its absence, the probate court would appoint an administrator of the estate. Generally, a notice regarding the court hearing is sent to the decedent’s heirs and beneficiaries.
- Notifying all creditors of the estate and taking its inventory – Based upon the state law, the personal representative provides written notice to all creditors of the estate. If a creditor wishes to make a claim on the asset, then it should be done within a particular time limit. The inventory of the probate property generally includes real estate, stocks, bonds, business interests.
- Estate and funeral expenses, debts and taxes should be paid from the estate – After determining legitimate claims, debts, bills, and taxes must be paid from the estate. The personal representative can also sell the assets of the deceased to satisfy his/her obligations.
- Transfer of legal title in the property – After the creditors file claims against the estate, and all bills and claims are cleared, the personal representative files a petition to the court to transfer the remaining assets to beneficiaries according to the last will (in case of the last will), or according to state intestate succession laws (in case of no will).
A properly drafted will that is regularly updated, a well-organized debt record, personal property, and other assets makes the probate process simple.