Common Questions About Probate | Wesley Chapel probate attorney
Probate is the legal process involved in transferring ownership of your assets to your heirs, according to your will. If you're in the Wesley Chapel area and in need of a probate attorney, contact DHW law.
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Common Questions About Probate

Published January 18, 2018 |Posted in Estate Planning Attorney

Common Questions About Probate

Contemplating your own mortality is never an appealing prospect but, unfortunately, the only certainties in life are death and taxes, so you’ll need to consider both at some point and prepare a will. As you may already know, if you die without leaving a valid will which clearly expresses your wishes, probate can become a very complex process. In fact, even where you do leave a perfectly clear and valid will, probate can throw up some issues. To save your heirs from unnecessary stress after your death, take heed of a Wesley Chapel estate planning attorney answers to some common probate questions.

What You Need to Know about Probate

Simply put, probate is the legal process involved in transferring ownership of your assets to your heirs, according to your will. If your estate is worth less than a certain amount, it may be possible for the transfer to go through without probate, although this limit can vary wildly between states. In some areas, it’s around $200,000, while in others, it’s just several thousand dollars. A probate attorney can give you more specific advice on your Wesley Chapel estate.

Until you schedule your consultation with a probate attorney to discuss your individual circumstances, here are a few key points you need to know:

  • As well as transferring assets to their new owners, probate acts as a public notice of death,
    allowing any creditors to make their claim on the estate
  • Once any debts have been paid, the rest of the estate will be split amongst the beneficiaries.
    Where no will has been made, the state will decide what happens to any property and assets
  • Generally, probate happens automatically unless you act to stop it
  • Probate can be a lengthy and expensive affair, with six months and several thousand dollars
    being fairly normal
  • Despite this, it can be better to let an estate go through probate, as the legal fees involved in
    bypassing it may exceed the cost of probate itself
  • Some assets may be excluded from probate by passing them to heirs using a revocable living
    trust. Your Wesley Chapel-based probate attorney can talk you through this process if you're
    considering it
  • The whole system is infinitely easier if you have a valid will in place
  • Planning Your Will

    As you can imagine, it’s important to plan your will carefully, both in terms of the contents, the beneficiaries and the executors you choose. While it can be tempting to name your spouse or offspring as executor, bear in mind that this can be a challenging task and, as such, should be entrusted to someone capable.

    The cost of writing a will can vary but, as a ballpark figure, an attorney will normally charge between $500 and $1,000. A DIY will may be perfectly suitable in some cases, where the estate is small but, although you don’t technically need an attorney to get involved, it’s very much advisable to do so. A poorly drafted will can cause countless headaches after your death.

    If you’re in the Wesley Chapel area and in need of a probate attorney, contact DHW law on 813-962-3176 to find out we could help.

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