Probate Lawyer in Amarillo, TX
Before the assets listed in a will can be distributed according to the testator’s final wishes, typically, a will must first be granted probate. Probate in itself is a judicial process whereby a person’s will is validated in court and determined to be the truest testament of a deceased person’s wishes. Once the will is granted private, the court then officially appoints an executor to enact the asset distribution and use the will as an enforceable legal instrument. While this may sound like a simple legal process designed to protect your wishes, this, unfortunately, isn’t always the case.
There is a lot of talk surrounding why one may or may not want to avoid the probate process, but the truth is actually very simple. Going to probate is a hassle. It’s costly, time-consuming, and invasive. Most cases take up to nine months for a will to be granted probate, but this can last much longer, with many cases taking up to two years. Not only does this interfere with the grieving process, but as time goes by, legal fees will begin to add up.
It is the estate’s responsibility to pay for these legal fees, meaning your assets are dissolved and used as payment. Additionally, probate is a public process, meaning your will becomes part of the public record, and anyone can view it. This leaves your will open and vulnerable for beneficiaries to challenge your will, delaying the distribution of your assets to intended beneficiaries and making the grieving process even more difficult. With all of these difficulties and challenges, it’s understandable that you’d want to avoid this legal proceeding—but how? This is where a probate litigation attorney can help.
Forming a living trust, having joint ownership, transferring on death deeds, or setting up beneficiary designations are a few strategies that a lawyer can help you enact to better protect your will. If you want to protect your privacy and ensure that all your assets go to their designated beneficiaries, contact Northern Legal today. We can put you in touch with an experienced and dedicated probate lawyer in Amarillo, TX, to find the best strategy to suit your needs and help you circumvent the probate process.