What is the Probate Process?

Indian adult daughter hugging her mother

If an estate plan is not in place or assets are not legally assigned to be distributed after someone’s passing, the surviving family members or beneficiaries will most likely go through probate. This can be difficult and complicated for those trying to navigate the process on their own.

If your family needs a compassionate, experienced probate attorney in Washington or Nevada, contact the team at Jerimy Kirschner & Associates, PLLC right away.

How Do I Know if Probate is Needed?

Probate is not always necessary after a loved one passes. Examples of when probate is not necessary include:

  • If the property is not solely in the name of the person who died;
  • If assets have been transferred into a trust; and,
  • Property that is not required to go through probate (such as life insurance or retirement benefits that would go directly to the named beneficiary).

The Probate Process

If property needs to go through probate, the following general timeline occurs.

First Six Months

  • Choose an executor or representative of the estate.
  • Prepare to file the petition for probate.
  • Identify potential heirs or other beneficiaries.
  • Court hearing to petition for probate.
  • Notify creditors and health services (if the person who passed received medical benefits).

Next Six Months

  • Inventory of property
  • Assess the estate’s value
  • Complete payment of applicable bills, taxes, and other costs associated with the estate

Nine Months After the Process Begins

  • Distribution of property
  • Final discharge

On average, completing the probate process can begin as early as nine months; however, many probate cases can last a year or more. Each family’s scenario is different, and there is not one timeline that will work for everyone.

If you believe you’ll need to go through probate to distribute a loved one’s property, contacting an experienced probate attorney right away is critical. The team at Jerimy Kirschner & Associates, PLLC has helped countless families through the probate process, and we can help you too. With offices in Washington and Nevada, we are ready to serve you and make the probate process as seamless as possible. Reach out to our compassionate team today for a free case consultation.

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