One of the few comforts after a loved one passes is the security he or she leaves to the family. As family members grieve, they can be sure that their loved one’s wishes have been respected, giving them the consolation they need to move on. However, those whose loved ones have died without creating a will must go through many different steps before receiving the assets and property they were promised—and in many cases, the amount they receive will be greatly reduced.
The Benefits of Having an Oakland County Attorney Handle Probate Administration
An estate can be tied up in probate for months, or even years, as the court decides how much is owed to the government and debtors before it is released. Family members who have been named as executors of the estate often do not know how to begin the process, and are unsure how each decision will affect the family’s financial future. At Raymond C. Barry & Associates, PLLC, we help guide your family through probate and advise the executor on each step of the process needed to close the estate. Call us today to have us explain the next steps in your probate case.
We work closely with the person chosen to handle the estate, commonly called the executor or personal representative. The personal representative is expected to take charge of the estate, and must keep careful records of how the assets are catalogued, retitled, and distributed. If the proper steps are not followed, there can be delays in the closing of the estate, and failure to legally transfer property to beneficiaries can cause further problems down the road.
We can guide you through the three stages of probate administration, including:
- Asset collection. People may accumulate wealth in many different forms, including bank account and stock holdings, land, buildings, insurance policies, and other property. We help representatives gather, inventory, and appraise their family member’s assets, and determine which assets are subject to probate.
- Payment of expenses. There are many parties who must be paid before the assets of an estate can be distributed. A percentage of the estate may be owed to state or federal taxes, and any debts or outstanding loans the deceased family member owed must be settled using funds from the estate.
- Asset distribution. The remaining property must be distributed according to the provisions of the will and in accordance with Michigan state law. Before an estate can be legally closed, property (such as homes, cars, and business holdings) must be retitled in the receiving beneficiary’s name, and all beneficiaries must acknowledge receipt of the assets.
We Can Help You Regain Control Over Your Loved One’s Property
Raymond C. Barry & Associates, PLLC, is happy to assist clients at their convenience, often meeting clients at their homes when they cannot come to our office. Contact our offices in Milford, Michigan today to have us explain your legal options during probate.