When an individual dies, leaving behind assets, debts, and mortgage, probate becomes necessary to sort everything out while there is no living trust. Probate is the process to clear all the dues that might be the rent of a premise, energy consumption bill, income taxes, and debts to the creditors, mortgages, if any, before passing the estate to the successors. All expenses are to be settled before the assets are finally transferred to the heirs. To obtain proper guidance on all these legal aspects and make the entire process smooth and hassle-free, the advice of a probate attorney near me 11581 is inevitable. Dealing with the debts should begin before the probate is opened formally.
Probate Attorney Handles the Bills and Mortgages before Probate
First, make a list that contains all the liabilities of the deceased person. The earlier you can do it, the better it is. Try to do it even before the probate is opened officially. This will help the probate procedure to flow smoothly. There are various kinds of liabilities you should take into account.
- Utility bills
- Credit card bills
- Home and car loans
- Business loans, personal loans
- Lines of credit
- Property taxes
- Storage fees
- Loan against life insurance policies
- Loan against bank account deposits, retirement accounts
Clear the Dues before the Probate Opens Officially As Much As Possible
After making the complete list, divide them into two categories, liabilities that can be paid off before the probate begins. For instance, the final bills as on the date of death of the owner can be paid once you come to know about it. The successors should clear these bills intentionally before the probate starts. This intention will help to speed up the process, which is the aim of every beneficiary. And those, which will continue during probate are called administrative expenses. You can pay them only after the probate process starts running. Since a common man can’t be aware of the rules and regulations involved in probate, better to employ a probate attorney near me 11581 to manage these matters.
Make it a point that no beneficiary needs to pay any of the outstanding bills from their personal fund. They should discuss with the executor of the estate and pay from the estate fund. Don’t forget to keep evidence of each and every expense made from the owner’s fund on his behalf after his demise. You need to produce them in the probate court before the assets are divided among the heirs finally.
Some of the liabilities are not that simple, and they need a judgment call to settle down whether it would be wise to keep the assets with loans. If any of the beneficiaries want to keep the car or the apartment, he might want to continue loan repayment from his pocket. Otherwise, the debts are to be paid from the estate fund. The rest of the beneficiaries might not agree with this decision. For this reason, a probate attorney near me 11581 is necessary who will be able to help to settle down the conflicts with a logical explanation.
What Does a Probate Attorney Do?
The personal representative or the administrator is responsible for making payment of administrative expenses while the probate is ongoing. He is the person nominated by the owner in his Will or by the court itself to look after the assets until they are passed to the beneficiaries. That person will consult with the probate attorney near me 11581 to assess the authenticity of the debts and the way they will be paid off. He will also have the right to sell out any of his assets to clear the outstanding amount.
If any of the heirs had made any payment from his personal fund, it is the administrator’s duty to reimburse that.
The exception remains there for some particular circumstances. Let us assume the deceased individual has left a house for a specific beneficiary that has loan outstanding. In that case, the beneficiary might need to continue the loan repayment. This is because others will not agree to pay this huge sum from the estate fund as others will not be benefitted from it. And these expenses will never have any reimbursement.
A beneficiary inherits a real estate, house, land, or apartment should be able to assume the mortgage as per the terms and conditions of the law after probate. If the loan has a proper insurance, the beneficiary need not pay further installments after inheriting the property.