Estate planning can be difficult to understand. However, with the help of an experienced estate and probate attorney from The Law Offices of Gary I. Handin, P.A., you can successfully prepare for your or a family member’s death. Florida Probate Code says that all wills must be probated. Only probate assets in the estate are involved in this legal process, meaning those in the deceased’s name only at the time of their death.
Understanding Probate Law
Probate is simply the legal process where a deceased individual’s will is proven in court as a valid and legal-binding document. This is the first step of administering an estate. When it is deemed valid, the personal representative will receive letters of administration from the probate court, which authorize the person appointed as Personal Representative of the estate to act on behalf of the decedent’s estate. During this time, any debts are settled, and any property is transferred to heirs or beneficiaries mentioned in the estate planningdocuments.
Four Steps of the Florida Probate Process
Our probate attorney, Gary I. Handin, understands the probate process in the State of Florida and can help his clients throughout the process.
The four main steps of the Florida probate legal process include:
1. File a Petition and Notify Heirs or Beneficiaries.
This notice is sent to all involved in the will. Also, each party is given the chance to object to the petition if necessary. Also, a notice of the probate hearing is typically required to be published to notify creditors and the general public of the beginning of the probate process.
2. Provide Proper Notice With An Inventory of All Estate Property
State law says that the personal representative of the estate must complete an inventory of all businesses, stocks or bonds, real estate property, and other assets. Sometimes appraisers are used to appraise non-cash assets such as antiques, jewelry, and more.
3. Expenses Paid from Estate
After all funeral and estate expenses such as burial expenses, debts, or taxes are paid. Ultimately, the personal representative must determine which creditor claims are legitimate, if applicable. Next, they will pay these debts and bills with estate funding. Also, sometimes some assets of the estate are sold to fulfill these debts. With the taking of the proper legal steps, the decedent’s homestead can be shielded from any creditor claims.
4. Property Titles Transferred
When all debts are resolved, all property is transferred according to the will. When there is no will, our probate attorney will follow all intestacy laws in the State of Florida. The representative of the estate must petition before the court to transfer all remaining assets of the estate. Once the court grants this, they can begin the transfer of assets and create new property deeds with the rightful owner (s).
Seek Legal Help Concerning Probate Law in Coral Springs
Having a well-written will ensures that your family can properly divide your assets among your loved ones. Our probate legal team at The Law Offices of Gary I. Handlin, P.A. can help explain the probate process and guide you every step of the way. To learn more about our legal services, call our Coral Springs law office at 1-877-815-4560 to schedule a legal consultation.