Demystifying Common Wills And Probate Myths
Probate refers to the procedure where the last will of an already deceased person is proven and registered in a supreme court. This process usually takes place when someone has to deal with the estate of a deceased person and basically involves the gathering of the deceased’s assets and its distribution to inheritors and creditors.
Probates are often executed by lawyers while the probate process is different in different states. As such, if you are a person looking to have a will sorted out, it is essential that you consider hiring a lawyer that is conversant with your state probate laws and is a registered law practitioner within your state.
Sadly, not many people know a lot of things about will, trust and probate laws; after all, these are topics that none of us want to deal with. However, it is important that you at least understand some of the most basic aspects so that you don’t get misled by some of the wills and probate myths and misconceptions.
To help you better understand wills and probate, this article will be looking at some of the common misconceptions surrounding the probate, trust and wills process.
Misconception #1: When someone dies without leaving a will, everything they had goes to the state
While there are many reasons why you need to write a will, worrying about your state seizing your family’s inheritance should not be one of them. The good thing is that all states have in place one or two rules that govern how the inheritance is handled and is responsible for ensuring that it is shared amongst the bereaved. As such, even one dies without any valid will, the state will not take any of their assets but will ensure that it is properly inherited.
Misconception #2: It takes a very long time to probate an estate
While there are cases where probating an estate took quite some time maybe due to legal issues or disputes, that is generally not the case with most will probate processes. The probate process normally takes about 3 to 4 months. This is often because there are set delay periods that are mandated by state laws to allow for different aspects to take place first. Once the wait period is over, then the process commences and is normally smooth taking anywhere from a week to a couple of months depending on the size of the estate to be shared.
Misconception #3: The cost of handling a probate is too high
Many people have believed the misconception that the cost of probate is too high and will eat up all their estate assets. The truth of the matter is that if the assets left behind are too small to probate, then there are probate shortcuts that are far less expensive and which will still work in ensuring that the assets are equally and properly shared. At the same time, probate processing costs are generally affordable and are normally pegged at 5% of the entire value of the estate in question.
The above are just but a few of some of the most common myths believed by many people. On the contrary, the wills and probate process is not that complicated as many tend to believe. However, if you want to make the best of the entire process, the best thing would be to consider hiring a professional lawyer who is well versed on matters of state family, wills, trusts and probate laws.