Probate is the process of collecting your assets, paying your debts and taxes, and transferring the property owned by you, at your death, to your heirs.
If you do not have a will before you die (intestate) the probate court will decide the disposition of your assets for your heirs. If you have a will at the time of your death, the person you named in your will as the “executor” files papers to the local probate court. The executor then proves the validity of your will and presents the court with lists of your property, your debts, and who is to inherit what you left behind.
Probate proceedings can be lengthy (a minimum of 6 months), because the law allows time for property to be collected, creditors to file claims, and heirs to be located. Probate proceedings may be extended in the event of litigation or contested claims. However, assets that have been placed into a trust may be distributed sooner, avoiding delay.
Further, should you happen to own real estate in a state other than the state in which you reside upon your death, probate proceedings may be required in each state where the real estate is located, resulting in increased expense and inconvenience to your heirs. However, real estate transferred into a revocable trust is managed and distributed according to the terms of your trust, and may avoid probate in other states.
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For many, estate planning is an important part of their legacy they hope to leave to their loved ones. If you are planning to leave an inheritance to your heirs, it’s important to make sure your team of legal and financial professionals understands your wishes.
If you’d like to discuss the future of your estate, please click below or give us a call at 913-393-1000. We’re always happy to listen and help.
Written by Garrett Griffin, BFG Legal Services
The views expressed represent the opinion of Barber Financial Group an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Information provided is for illustrative purposes only and does not constitute investment, tax, or legal advice. Barber Financial Group does not accept any liability for the use of the information discussed. Consult with a qualified financial, legal, or tax professional prior to taking any action.
Investment advisory services offered through Barber Financial Group, Inc., an SEC Registered Investment Adviser.