What's the Role of Deceased Estate Lawyers in Execution of Wills?
The law covers almost every aspect of your life, including how your estate should be handled when you pass on. Your estate refers to all the monies, property and assets you leave behind once you're deceased. Writing a will is the best method of ensuring everything you worked hard for is handled according to your last wishes. If you die without having a valid will, you'll be declared intestate, meaning the law regarding succession in your specific state or territory will be used to deal with your wealth.
When this happens, people you may not want to benefit from your estate may inherit your property assets. Though you can write up your own will, seeking the help of a deceased estate lawyer is vital in many different ways.
Here's a lowdown on the lawyer's role in the execution of your will.
The first step in the execution of any will is to prove before the court that the document is valid. This is called probate. This process typically involves filing a petition with the probate court and informing everyone listed in the testator's will, as well as those who stand to benefit from the will by operation of succession law about the petition.
When the probate process begins, the court gives everyone concerned a chance to contest the will if it has not been written properly or if they have been left out of the will. The deceased's lawyers will file all documents and present witnesses required to prove that the document presented in court is indeed the last will and testament of the testator.
Identifying and collecting the testator's assets
The lawyer will help the will executor to identify and take possession of the deceased person's assets for safe-keeping. This is not always an easy job, as it may involve locating property and assets that the deceased secretly owned.
Determining and settling the testator's debts and tax liabilities
Once all of the deceased person's property and assets have been located, all of their unpaid debts and tax liabilities will have to be settled before the remaining assets can be distributed among the listed beneficiaries. An estate lawyer will advise the executor on how to deal with the deceased person's debts and tax liabilities.
The guidance of a deceased estate lawyer is crucial for ensuring proper execution of your valid will. Contact an experienced estate lawyer to discuss your specific needs and situation.