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“At first this looked like a simple estate involving a house and a Charles Schwab account. As we dug into the details, there were a number of issues that came up with the assets and there were some challenges with the parties involved as well. Our attorney led us through each issue one at a time and eventually everything was resolved. We learned that Probates are a challenge and thank goodness we had Attorney Joshua Rosenberg from Merideth Nagel, PA there as a guide. We will be forever grateful to Joshua and his team.”
-Edward D.

Probate is the process that transfers property from the estate of the person who has died to their beneficiaries by proving a Will is valid. This gives the personal representative the right to distribute assets according to the terms of the Will.

Many people mistakenly believe that by having a Will, the probate process can be avoided but it is important to understand that the Will must still be taken through probate. Typically, probate involves paperwork and, if the Will is challenged, a court appearance by lawyers. The lawyers and court fees are paid from the estate property, which would otherwise go to the people who inherit the deceased person’s property.

“Probate is not quick, cheap or private”

The process can tie up property for a year or more and it can be expensive. Legal fees and costs usually exceed 6% of the estate’s value or more if problems or litigation arise.

How Do You Avoid Probate?

Creating a Living Trust is one of the best ways to avoid the time, expense and invasion of privacy of probate. There are many different types of trusts – more than most people realize. Each type of trust is best suited to addressing a different kind of situation, but all are designed to protect your assets and your loved ones.

Your lawyer can prepare a Living Trust Agreement that appoints a trustee to manage your property for your beneficiaries. To maintain control, you can be your own trustee. Commonly, the person creating the Living Trust is the first beneficiary and it transfers the property to their heirs upon death.

Probate can be a hard process to deal with, especially when one is mourning the loss of a loved one, and hiring a professional you trust to handle these matters can reduce stress and frustration. At Merideth Nagel, PA, we have a dedicated team of professionals that make people their priority when dealing with these matters. We are well versed in probate law and can handle this complex process on your behalf.

To schedule a free evaluation, please contact us today.