Severna Park Estate Administration Attorney
In order for a deceased person’s wishes to be fulfilled, in terms of who gets what property, an estate administrator must make an account of all of their property and debts, and distribute the property according to their will, or if there is no will, according to the laws of Maryland. The more property and/or more debt that the deceased person had, the more complex this administration becomes. An attorney will guide you through every step of this process, and ensure that each beneficiary is awarded the property that the decedent’s will intended them to receive. In addition to this valuable service, the Severna Park estate administration attorneys of Frame & Frame, LLC will also help you to minimize estate and inheritance taxes.
What Does Probate Entail?
Probate is the official proving of a will, and it is a process that all wills must go through. It can take anywhere from a few months to a year in some cases, before probate is complete and beneficiaries can receive their property. Before all of that happens, the following steps must be taken:
- Locate the estate planning documents, including the will, power of attorney, titles, bank statements, and much more;
- Consult with an experienced estate administration attorney;
- Determine the value of the estate;
- Identify debts and outstanding bills;
- Figure out if inheritance tax is owed, which is due within nine months after the decedent’s death, according to the Comptroller of Maryland;
- Settle the estate and distribute assets; and
- Finalize and close the estate.
Typically, probate is a relatively stress-free ordeal if the estate administrator has a thorough understanding of the tasks set out before them and has the time and patience necessary for achieving success. However, sometimes issues do arise during probate. These include, but are not limited to, the will being contested, the estate executor being sued, family arguments, having issues with creditors, and more. To be sure, $30 trillion will be inherited over the next 30 years, according to Forbes, and not all of these transfers of wealth go smoothly. An attorney can greatly reduce the amount of time that probate takes, maximize the property that the beneficiaries receive, and minimize stress and the chance of the estate administrator being held personally responsible for financial losses.
What is Not Included in my Estate?
Not everything that the deceased person owned at the time of their death is considered part of the estate, and these assets are not included in operation of law and therefore do not go through probate. Some examples of these types of property include the following:
- Life insurance benefits
- Joint tenancy property;
- Property held in trusts; and
- 401(k) accounts, IRA accounts, CD accounts, and Annuities.
Call a Severna Park Estate Administration Attorney Today
A lot can go wrong during estate administration if legal representation is not entrusted to oversee the executor’s actions. Creditors may be paid off when they do not need to be paid, or creditors may not be paid in time and therefore file a lawsuit. And, family members may do more than bicker. Litigation not only drives a wedge between family members, but it will likely reduce the amount of assets in the estate, meaning that everyone ends up with less. Contact the Frame & Frame estate administration attorneys today for more information about how we can help.