Oklahoma probate law

Probate Lawyer | Reason to Hire a Probate Attorney

This Content Written For Willhoite Law, PLLC.

Probate lawyers can help you settle estates through court processes. These cases are usually lengthy and filled with complex terminologies. Almost every family or estate executor refer to lawyers to handle probate issues. These lawyers through their experience and knowledge provide possible solutions. Experienced probate is an expert in paralegal or accounting. He can handle the major probate issues or the entire process.

These lawyers are a much better option than trying to do it yourself. A lot of money can be saved by bringing in an attorney when needed. Probate lawyers are hired to make sure that the will of the deceased person is valid. This also ensures that the property is transferred its rightful heir.

The probate process depends on the value of the property. If the property has a small value this process may be avoided. It is most important when a big value estate issue arises which has to be settled between multiple parties. These lawyers may represent heirs or any other party who are interested in the outcome of that property.

People who are given the probate process are called “PRs” or “Personal Representatives”. The probate representatives are called “Executors” if the deceased has left a valid will. If there is no will and the deceased has not appointed an executor then they are called “Administrators”. Despite having distinct names, executors and administrators have the same function.

Some properties never have to go through probate because they are transferred to the heir at the time of death directly. This is done by an insurance policy that has a named beneficiary or is owned jointly which automatically bypasses the probate.

The properties that do not qualify for simple proceedings are referred to court. The court supervises and passes judgment over the case. Under their supervision, the property is distributed or disposed to the heirs or creditors. The courts make sure that the property is passed on in accordance with the will of the deceased. Certain property may be sold so that the proper distribution of the assets may take place. 

The need for having a probate lawyer arises due to three common reasons. These include court proceeding, contracts, and conflicts. These lawyers are there to ensure that the property is transferred to its rightful heir or among all the parties. The three issues are further discussed below:

A lawyer is required when you are going to appear before a judge. This is important because sometimes a will or other property documents are written unclearly. So, heirs need the court to resolve these matters. For this reason, they will need a lawyer to present the will or other documents in the courtroom for processing.

If the will is challenged, then the case is taken to the court. This requires the presence of a lawyer of each party to represent them in court.

When the assets of a property are insufficient, this means that they cannot be used to pay off the debts, taxes and other expenses. A claim can be filed against them by creditors. These creditors even ask the executors for money again and again. So, it is better to have a good lawyer on your side who can manage all the claims of the creditors or any other issue. Hiring should be done as soon as possible to keep a proper check and balance. An expert can help you manage and resolve the assets and any issue that arises during the process.

Most of the times legal documents such as deeds or estate documents are prepared during the probate process. This is done in order to fulfill the last wishes of the deceased. This process enables the heir of the property to properly sort and arrange what they have inherited.

For example, if a family owned restaurant is inherited by two siblings and one of them wants to sell their share of the restaurant to the other. An attorney would draft out the possible value of the property and business. This would help in making an arrangement of sale between the siblings without any conflict.

The assets of a business are usually complex. These require the involvement and guidance of an attorney. The attorney can make sure the right legal documents are prepared. These documents are used to dissolve or transfer the ownership to the rightful heir.

The scenario is different if the property is a real estate. The owners might have planned to make big changes to it. A probate lawyer is required in this process. This is important so that the right value of the property can be calculated, splits can be made and shares can be distributed. This also sorts out the issue of what to keep and what to sell off.

Conflicts are the most common part of a probate. After a death conflict may arise among the heirs which cause disputes and tensions. A lawyer can help in resolving the conflicts during the probate process. They help in keeping the family from falling apart in these situations by controlling the bad feelings and arguments.

For example, for any reason, if someone thinks that the will produced is invalid or doesn’t hold credibility, an attorney must be called upon to represent the case. This helps ensure that a fair share of the property is shared among all the rightful heirs. The situation to be followed here is that if the deceased has more children from the second marriage. In the distribution process, the children from the first marriage may think they did not receive their fair share of the property. Both parties in this situation will require an attorney to solve the disputes between them.

For such complex and emotional issues, a probate lawyer may be required to keep the harmony between the family members. The attorney can help the families to solve their legal matters without going to court for a full-on battle. The attorneys provide an early resolution which is peaceful and gives each heir their rightful share accordingly.