Probate & Trust Administration
Common Questions Regarding Probate:
- I am named personal representative under a Will, now what
- The bank won’t give me access although I am named in the Will, why?
Common Questions Regarding Trusts:
- Does an estate need to be administered if I have a Trust?
- If I have a Trust will probate be required upon my death?
PROBATE & TRUST ADMINISTRATION
A probate is a court-supervised process that is required to distribute a deceased person’s (known as the “decedent’) probate assets to his or her heirs and beneficiaries. Although you may be named in a Will, banks and other financial institutions will not give you access to a decedent’s assets without certified court letters. A court-supervised probate administration process may be necessary when a loved one who owns assets dies, whether or not the deceased had a will.
The probate process begins with a person petitioning the court to be appointed personal representative of the estate. A personal representative has specific fiduciary duties to perform in administering the estate of the deceased. Some of these duties include gathering and preparing an inventory of the decedent’s assets, paying debts of the decedent, and preparing final tax returns for both the decedent and his or her estate.
The probate process can quickly become overwhelming for someone unfamiliar with it. Caress Law can help. At Caress Law, we:
- Explain the duties of the personal representative and guide you throughout the administration of the estate to ensure that you, as the personal representative, is not subject to future claims.
- Prepare and file necessary petitions, court required documents and tax returns, including notices and court required accountings.
- Facilitate proper distribution of the estate to the heirs and beneficiaries.
You don’t need to carry the probate burden all by yourself. Let the Caress Law professionals ease the probate workload.
ESTATE TAX PLANNING
Unlike probate administration, trust administration is not a court supervised process; however, administration of the trust is necessary as the Trustee (the person tasked with administering the trust) has certain legal obligations he or she must fulfill as required by law. The person tasked with that duty plays a vital role, one with numerous responsibilities. At Caress Law, we will guide you through every step of the trust’s administration so that the trust administrator performs his or her duties in compliance with the law and makes informed decisions regarding tax elections and other administrative actions performed on behalf of the trust.
If a family member or friend tasked you with the responsibility to administer their trust estate upon their death or incapacity, would you know what to do? Let Caress Law help.