The probate process can take anywhere from multiple months to possibly multiple years. The time it takes to finish this process is subject to various elements. These comprise of the trust and estate laws of a specific state, the properties geographic location, the estates value, if there is a will, is it valid, whether a challenge over property and/or assets happens, and many other matters that can come up throughout during probate.
Apart from the general factors mentioned above, the reason that the probate process varies from different states is mainly due to the differences between state laws and the procedures needed by each one. For example, in some states the process could take a couple of months, while other states probate might take up to three or more years.
The terminology to “probate a will” just means that the probate court needs to determine its
authenticity. After that is confirmed, the process of allocating the estate and the paying off of debts can start. The will is not thought of as authentic until the court reaffirms as such. The probate process will usually take less time and is a lot less complicated when the deceased has devised a will.
If the deceased did not leave a will behind, nevertheless, then the court will allocate property and assets according to state succession laws. Even though a lot of the process will still remain the same as though the person that passed away had a will, the main difference between passing away with or without a will is that the deceased is not going to have a say in the matter.
For instance, the executor will usually be named by the court and each part of the estate goes through state succession laws. Consequently, when the deceased desired a specific house to go to a grandchild, but they don’t have a will declaring as much, then the house will be given to the next individual designated in the state succession statute.
Once more, the process for each is subject to state laws and circumstances associated to the actual estate.
Am I Going to Need an Attorney for Assistance with Probate matters?
When you are required to probate an estate, is a wise idea to think about hiring a local probate attorney for further help. Among the confusing state laws, a multitude of legal paperwork, and different executor fiduciary tasks, probate proceedings can be quite complicated to navigate without legal assistance. Therefore, a knowledgeable probate attorney is an invaluable resource to have throughout the probate process.
Your attorney can explain the associated state laws and procedures, the responsibilities you have being an executor or beneficiary, and may draft any required documents. An attorney may also assist you in preparing and filing a case in case of a challenge, and will be able to offer representation in court on the issue if required.
Wishnia, J. (2020, August 11). How Long Does It Take to Probate a Will? A State Comparison. Retrieved January 11, 2021, from https://www.legalmatch.com/law-library/article/how-long-does-probate-take-a-state-comparison.html
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