If you have been appointed as the Executor of somebody’s Will, you may be worried about how to carry out the procedure perfectly. The truth is, probate can be an extremely time-taking and complex procedure. There are so many ways one can go wrong, especially if they are inexperienced in the field.
If this is your first time, it is recommended to hire a Garden Ridge estate planning attorney. However, if you do not want to hire an attorney, some tips can help you as a beginner. This knowledge will help you prevent problems and facilitate things.
Tips to probate without a lawyer
- Petition the court.
The first step to begin the probate is filing a petition in court. You can only file the petition if you are the Executor or want to appoint an administrator when there is no Will. To file, you will need a copy of the Will. If there is no Will, you need to provide definitive knowledge about it.
- Notify heirs and creditors.
Heirs and creditors mentioned in the Will deserve to know that probate is going to take place. You must notify the creditors and pay their debts. However, remember that only the assets in the Will can be used to pay the debts.
- Change the legal ownership of the assets.
Distribution of the assets in Garden Ridge can be one of the most lengthy parts of the process. This is because you need to change the ownership from the deceased’s title to the beneficiaries. It is relatively easier to transfer assets to heirs but complex when it comes to other people.
Moreover, certain assets may have multiple owners, which just adds to the complexity. An attorney can advise you on how to proceed.
- Pay funeral expenses, taxes, and debts.
Making the correct payments before their respective deadlines is crucial. Prioritize the ones that need to get paid immediately. The court emphasizes paying funeral expenses, debts, and taxes before the heirs and other beneficiaries. If you miss out on even one payment, you could face issues. Therefore, you need a good understanding of accounting for all debts.
- Tell the court what you have done and close the estate.
Once you have made all the payments and distributed assets to the beneficiaries, you will need to report back to the court. The court will ask for proof, so make sure you have all the necessary documents.
Before turning over all the information to the court, it is usually good to revise what you have done. This will ensure whether you have done everything correctly or if you have missed out on something.