Probate Attorneys in Granite Bay, California
PROBATE IN CALIFORNIA
In California, probate is the court supervised process of estate administration. After a person passes away, if they do not have an estate plan their estate will be divided according to California law. If the decedent had a will, their estate will be divided up according to the terms of their will.
The first step in the probate process is to file a petition with the probate court in the county that the person passed away in. In filing the petition for probate, the original will of the decedent is lodged.
After filing the petition for probate, the court will set a hearing date. At the hearing date, the court will appoint an executor or administrator, as the case may be.
Once appointed as administrator or executor of the estate, there are significant duties and responsibilities that must be performing, including the following:
Acquiring an employer identification number from the IRS to file the decedent’s income tax return
Opening a bank account for the estate
Preparing income tax returns
Filing an inventory of assets
Paying debts to creditors
Notifying the state health or welfare department of the decedent’s death
Filing any federal or state estate tax returns that may be required
Notifying heirs of the final hearing and filing proof that you did so
Requesting permission from the court to distribute assets
Transferring property and assets to named beneficiaries
Filing receipts and requesting release from duties
Benefits of Probate in California
There are certain benefits to probate. For example, the court supervises the process and ensures that the process, and your wishes, are properly carried out. Additionally, the beneficiaries to the estate have access to the court system to resolve disputes related to the estate. Finally, the probate process starts a time clock for creditors of the estate. If creditors take more than four months to submit their claims after they receive notice of probate, they may forfeit the right to pursue any claims.
Reasons to Avoid Probate in California
Many of the clients who come to Herrig, Vogt & Hensley, LLP for assistance with estate planning are concerned with ensuring that their estates will avoid probate.
Some of the disadvantages associated with the probate process include:
Time-consuming — Probate can be an incredibly lengthy process, often taking several months or even years to complete. Beneficiaries cannot receive their inheritance until all other steps of the probate process have been fulfilled.
Court costs and legal fees – The probate process is expensive. All of the court costs and legal fees can decrease the aggregate value of the estate that is available to beneficiaries.
Lack of privacy — Probate is a matter of public record, meaning that information about the financial affairs of the estate and the provisions of the will are not kept private. Personal information contained in the will may be public fodder, such as why an adult child has been disinherited.
Potential disputes — Notification of the probate process may provide an opportunity for an heir to contest the will or challenge its validity.
Choose Herrig, Vogt & Hensley, LLP Today!
Experienced Counsel for Probate
The probate process can be complicated, especially since an executor of a decedent’s will would typically have to face conflicts and disputes among beneficiaries and creditors. This situation is made even more overwhelming when the surviving family member must go through the often-arduous process of settling his or her estate. If you are appointed as the executor of a decedent’s will that requires probate, you will be subject to a lengthy court process that requires significant documentation and possible fees.
At Herrig, Vogt & Hensley, LLP, we understand that the probate process can be complicated. We are dedicated to helping executors and administrators through the probate process and want to ensure it is completed as efficiently as possible.
Our probate attorneys have decades of experience with a comprehensive knowledge of California probate law. You can trust that our team can guide you through the probate process with the efficiency you need.
Get started today and contact our firm for your free initial consultation.