Understanding the Process

What is Probate and Trust Administration?

  • Probate is the legal procedure that occurs after a person’s death to ensure the proper distribution of their assets, settlement of debts, and the overall management of their estate. It includes tasks like validating the will, inventorying the deceased’s assets, paying outstanding bills, and distributing the estate’s property.
  • Trust Administration on the other hand, involves the management and distribution of a trust’s assets according to the terms set by its creator. While trusts are designed to bypass probate, they require meticulous administration to ensure the grantor’s wishes are respected and legal standards are met.


Our Compassionate Approach

During the emotionally taxing period following the loss of a loved one, we stand by your side. Recognizing the weight of grief, we offer more than just legal advice; we offer a steady hand to guide you through complex proceedings, ensuring the decedent’s wishes are honored.

Get Started with your Probate Services today.

Comprehensive Services We Offer

For Probate:

  • Filing the will and necessary probate documents with the court.
  • Handling all creditor communications.
  • Taking care of personal assets, from securing to transferring.
  • Addressing tax matters, from filing returns to clearing any outstanding debts.
  • Managing distributions to beneficiaries with complete transparency.

For Trust Administration:

  • Filing the will and ensuring proper notifications are sent.
  • Handling all tax-related requirements.
  • Facilitating asset sales, transfers, and settlements.
  • Maintaining clear and precise accounting throughout.

Additional Resources

An Introduction to Settling an Estate Through Probate (PDF Download)

Frequently Asked Questions

Probate/Trust Administration

Probate is a legal process that takes place after someone’s death to validate their will, settle debts, and distribute assets. Trust administration, on the other hand, involves managing and disbursing a trust’s assets according to the stipulations set by its creator.

The duration of probate can vary widely depending on the complexity of the estate, potential disputes, and state regulations. On average, it can take anywhere from a few months to over a year.

Not all assets go through probate. Assets with designated beneficiaries (like life insurance or retirement accounts) and those held jointly often bypass the process. Assets placed in a living trust also avoid probate.

Generally, trust administration can be more streamlined than probate since it avoids court involvement. However, the speed can also depend on the trust’s complexity and the trustee’s efficiency.

A trustee is responsible for notifying beneficiaries, managing trust assets, addressing tax obligations, and disbursing assets as the trust stipulates, among other duties.

When a person dies intestate (without a will), state laws will dictate how their assets are distributed, often giving priority to spouses, children, and other close relatives.

Yes, both processes have associated costs. Probate may include court fees, attorney fees, appraisal costs, and more. Trust administration may involve trustee compensation, tax preparation fees, and other expenses.

While not all assets can avoid probate, strategic estate planning, like creating a living trust or designating beneficiaries for specific assets, can minimize the need for probate.

Typically, interested parties like beneficiaries or heirs can contest a will or trust. However, valid grounds, such as concerns of undue influence or lack of testamentary capacity, must be present.

If a trustee is negligent or breaches their fiduciary duties, beneficiaries can take legal action to have them replaced or seek damages.

While it’s possible to navigate these processes without legal counsel, having an experienced attorney can simplify complex procedures, avoid potential pitfalls, and ensure all legal obligations are met.


What Our Clients Say

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We understand that every situation is unique. Reach out to us for a personal consultation. Whether you’re navigating probate, taking on the role of a trustee, or just seeking clarity on estate matters, you don’t have to tread the path alone.

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