Handling The Probate of Estate Process

While it is never a pleasant experience to have to go through the financial records, bank statements & bills of a loved one who has recently passed. If you have been designated as the Personal Representative it is a necessary process in order to locate & cover any outstanding bills, or expenses. If the decedent had a created a trust, or will, this will help expedite the process as it provides a clear road map of where the money & assets should go, and more importantly who/where. The Estate Probate Process can be tricky & unclear so before moving forward on the process, it is recommended to consult a lawyer.

Assemble Your Team of Experts
 

Wills, Trusts & Other Estate Planning Documents are designed to make the probate process smoother. However, it is advised to consult with both a lawyer and an accountant to help clear up any confusion regarding financials. It is advised to consult a lawyer as they can help in facilitating the probate process.

 

Gather Documents & Relevant Files
 

If your loved one did not have a Trust or Will prepared, trying to locate their financial records can be like finding a needle in a haystack. With the rise of digital banking, if you have access to their logins you may be able to get a clearer idea without having to look through mountains of paperwork or years of receipts. The most important documents to locate are:

  • Bank Statements

  • Brokerage Accounts

  • Insurance policies

  • Deeds

  • Pensions or retirement plans

  • Tax returns

  • Capital gains

  • Dividends

 

Begin the Probate Process
 

Once you have the proper documents gathered, consult with an estate attorney to officially open the probate estate with the probate courts. Based on the documents provided your attorney will be able to determine if you're better of going through a formal or informal probate process.

 

Valuation of Assets

Once the probate process has begun, it is important to contact a professional appraiser to come out to your property to appraise any tangible items such as artwork, collectibles, jewelry, or existing businesses.

Pay Off Bills, Taxes & Estate Taxes

Following your decedent’s property appraisal and the beginning of the probate process, now that you have a better figure of what may be owed on any outstanding payments, taxes, or bills, it comes time to contact creditors to inform them on the account holders passing by sending along a death certificate. This not only informs creditors of this update but gives them ample time to file for payment against the decedent’s estate.

 

Contact Andrew Bucklin For Estate Planning Services In Boston!

While the Probate Process certainly comes with its fair share of hurdles, it is important to make sure that you are not making any mistakes than can cost you greatly during the probate process. For in depth questions on any situation you may be in please contact Andrew as soon as possible!

If you have questions regarding the Probate Process, or if you are in need of Probate Estate Services in the Boston area, contact Andrew Bucklin today at 781-632-8675 or bucklinlaw@gmail.com!  Bucklin Legal can answer any of your questions and always promptly returns inquiries via email or telephone.