Probate Lawyer in Natick
Are You Dealing with the Consequences of a Loved One’s Passing?
The passing of a loved one can be an emotionally and legally complicated time. These dual complications can conflict with one another, making it difficult to both grieve properly and handle the legal matters of a loved one’s estate at the same time.
Marsden Law P.C. can provide the support you need to deal with the legal consequences of a loved one’s passing. With our assistance, you can rest assured that someone else is guiding you through the legal process so you can focus on processing the emotional toll of your loss.
Our probate lawyer in Natick has nearly 20 years of experience assisting clients in situations like yours. Each person we work with receives a personalized experience that accounts for their individual situation and goals. Let us help you pull through this difficult time and take care of what must be dealt with. We’ll do the heavy lifting and involve you in the process as much as you wish or is needed.
Schedule a free initial consultation with our attorney at Marsden Law P.C. to learn more about how we can help. Get in touch with us today by calling (800) 828-7854 or by contacting us online.
Probate: What It Means & Involves
Probate is the court-supervised process of validating someone’s will and administering their estate.
Whether or not someone died with a will, their estate is administered under the supervision of a probate judge in court. If the deceased left a will, usually the first step is for the executor named in the will to file it with the court for validation. A will can be deemed invalid if a judge can be convinced that it is not the most recent will, is a product of forgery, fraudulent, or that the deceased lacked capacity to sign the will during their lifetime.
If a will is valid, then the court will instruct the executor to proceed with the administration of the estate. This is a process that can take anywhere between nine to 18 months to complete, typically depending upon how complicated or organized an estate was left by the deceased.
In addition to locating and validating the will, administration during probate includes other important tasks such as these:
- Notifying heirs, beneficiaries named in the will, creditors of the deceased, and the government of the deceased’s passing
- Identifying all property belonging to the estate and determining its total value
- Creating a bank account for the estate and developing an accounting system to keep track of cash flow into and out of the estate’s accounts
- Accepting claims from the deceased’s creditors and challenging any that may be invalid
- Preparing a final tax return and paying the estate’s tax bill
- Paying valid debts owed by the estate
- Distribute the leftover property and assets to the deceased’s heirs and beneficiaries, in accordance with the deceased’s wishes
This is, of course, a very simple overview of a very complicated legal and financial process. A probate attorney in Natick from Marsden Law P.C. can provide the guidance you need to perform these tasks with confidence.
Do You Wish to Avoid Probate?
Probate is generally regarded as something that should be avoided if at all possible. This opinion is not universal, but many people find it preferable to spare their loved ones the legal costs probate can accrue, not to mention the time it can take. Probate is also a matter of public record, which means anyone interested enough can get information about your family that you may have wished to keep private.
Trusts are typically used to bypass probate. This works because a trust goes into effect the instant it’s created. During their life, the trust-maker can fund property and money into a trust. Doing so legally makes it the property of the trust as opposed to their own personal property, even if they can still use whatever they put in. When the trust-maker dies, the trustee or a co-trustee administers the estate as an executor might, just without the court’s involvement.
Other estate planning mechanisms that can avoid probate include the following:
- Joint tenancy ownership
- Limited Liability Companies
- Transfer-on-death registration for vehicles
- Transfer-on-death deeds for real estate
- Transfer-on-death registration for securities
- Payable-on-death designations for your bank accounts
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
If you need assistance from a probate attorney in Natick, turn to Marsden Law P.C. for support. Our first concern is ensuring that your interests are protected during this time and that the probate process can be properly handled. Rest assured that we have the experience, knowledge, and skill it takes to help you deal with the aftermath of a loved one’s passing.
Arrange a free consultation with us when you call (800) 828-7854 or contact us online today.
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No matter the size of your estate, it is important to take the time to assess your situation and draft a comprehensive estate plan that includes a last will and testament, strategies to minimize taxes, a durable power of attorney, and guardianship for any minor children. Marsden Law P.C. will develop a custom estate plan that covers your unique needs and ensures you and your loved ones are prepared for major life events and emergencies.