What Happens To Your Estate When You Do Not Hire A Probate Lawyer To Handle Things

Law Blog

Most people are confused as to why they have to hire a lawyer to manage their affairs after they have died. They do not understand that it is not enough just to have a will or to have a will drawn up and witnessed by a notary. In fact, most people are surprised to learn just how much can really go wrong after they have passed away. Here is what happens when you do not hire a probate attorney before you pass away to manage your affairs and your estate after you have passed. 

Debts You Owe to Creditors May Result in Liens and Lawsuits

Think of a probate lawyer as someone who protects your assets when you cannot. If you did not hire a probate lawyer, all of the creditors and lenders to which you owe money can come after your assets and your estate. They can sue the estate and request that liens be placed against everything you left behind. It turns into quite a legal nightmare for your heirs because they will have to be the ones to defend the estate and the assets in order to secure what you meant to leave each of them. In the end, the resulting legal fees to retain as much of the assets and estate as possible while appeasing creditors and lenders may leave the estate almost bankrupt and leave very little to your heirs. 

Confirming the Validity of Your Will May Take Months, Instead of a Single Court Date

The probate lawyer knows exactly what documents are needed to be pulled and submitted to the court to verify a person's death and confirm the validity of the deceased's will. If these documents are not submitted to the courts, the will cannot be verified or validated, and your heirs will not receive what they were willed. Your heirs would have to spend a lot of time finding out what documents they needed and then finding a valid copy of your will before they could submit things to the courts and pay the related fees. If you had a probate lawyer, the probate lawyer can get all of those ducks in a row in a matter of a couple of days and quickly resolve these matters to the satisfaction of your estate and your heirs. 

Interest on Loans and Credit Cards Stop on the Day You Pass

Interest on loans that you are repaying and interest on credit cards is supposed to stop on the day you pass away. The interest will continue unless you have a lawyer who has a list of all of these creditors and can notify the creditors and lenders of your passing. Then the creditors and lenders will expect that the extra interest is paid to them from your estate, despite the fact that you had passed earlier, leaving your heirs with less than what they should have received. It just pays to hire a probate lawyer on retainer years before you pass. 

All of these are reasons why you should consider hiring a probate attorney for your estate once you pass. 


26 September 2019

Dealing with Estate Planning When You're Single

Too many single people assume they don't need to plan their estate. My brother fell into this category, and his unexpected passing left our entire family struggling to deal with his home, belongings, and financial accounts. It took nearly three years for the courts to set up a deal because he left no paperwork detailing how he wanted his estate divided. The situation immediately convinced me to work on my own estate, even though I'm still in my early 30's and don't have children or a spouse to worry about. Since it's a little harder to pick beneficiaries and estate managers when you're single, I collected the resources I used for making my own decisions and decided to publish them here on my blog. Use these resources before talking to an estate planning attorney so you're prepared for making hard decisions.