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At We Buy Houses in El Paso, we understand that a probate legal process can be a difficult and lengthy process to go through. A probate is a process where the title of a deceased person’s property is transferred to beneficiaries. And if there is no Will left by the decedent, which is the deceased owner of the estate, then the process of distributing the decedent’s assets will be longer and more complicated especially when there are several beneficiaries that may be disputing beneficiary rights. Also, depending on what state the decedent lived in is very important as well, as each state has their own laws governing the probate process but for the most part, all states follow the same basic guidelines.
First, you must look at the decedent’s Will and see who the executor is. The executor is the named family member or person that will be handling the probate process for the decedent and distributing the assets according to court orders. But what do you do if you were named executor in a Will? Where do you start? We’ll show you what you should do here at We Buy Houses in El Paso.
There are some decisions that need to be made before you even get your local court involved in a probate process. A question you need to ask yourself is: What kind of administration will I need? One of the factors that will help you determine what decision to take is the value of the property. If the property is valued at over $75,000 then you will need a formal administration. If the property is valued at 25,000 to 75,000 then you can go with an informal administration, which is a quicker, less expensive probate process. You can always consult with a probate attorney to help you decide this matter as well as other factors will come into play that need to be considered so that you can make an informed choice.
There are basic steps that must be taken whether you choose a formal probate process or an informal one. Basically the difference is that of judicial involvement. A formal probate process entails more control and decisions by the probate court than the informal probate process. That is why you need to figure out the value of the estate, which is not only the decedent’s property but also his bank accounts and other assets.
First thing is first! You must file a petition with the court to appoint an administrator if there is no Will. But if there is a Will, then the person named in the Will, will be the executor. The executor or administrator will be responsible in the handling of all matters concerning the estate and the distribution of the assets to the heirs named in the Will or whoever the court appoints as the beneficiaries to be. The administrator and executor are both under the jurisdiction of the court and have to gather all the assets of the decedent and distribute them according to the decedent’s Will or according to what the probate court decides.
What does a probate process involve? Well, there are several things that a probate process solves and that is the payment of any debts such as taxes, notifying creditors that the decedent is dead and liquidating those debts, determining estate value by inventorying properties and bank accounts, etc, and finally the distribution of all assets to approved beneficiaries.
So first you must fill out all appropriate forms to open the estate probate process. Get informed as to what you need at your local county clerk’s office and then either have an attorney prepare the forms for you or fill them out yourself. File the appropriate documents at the local court where the decedent lived. Gather all of the copies of the probate documents they will require you as well as the filing fee and file your documents. When you receive the letters of administration that appoint you as the personal representative, then you are ready to be the administrator of the estate. Wait for your probate hearing appointment and you will be well on your way to properly and justly distributing the decedent’s assets to the beneficiaries.