Do you have a small estate? How do you avoid the probate process? And even before getting an answer to these questions, how do you know whether you have a small or a large estate? Before anything else, you must avail the services of a probate lawyer near me 11572. Well, one thing for sure is if you have a small estate, you need not worry about the probate procedure at all. Does that make sense?
The majority of the states now offer shortcuts to avoid the probate process for the owners of small estates. The states define the terms of these shortcuts differently. The laws are put down in a specified manner. A large number of big estates worth thousands of dollars, can go through special transfer processes. This way, they speed the assets to the inheritors.
Probate Lawyer Defines a Small Estate
Luckily or unluckily, there is no definite definition of a small estate. This is mainly because financial institutions and banks have the flexibility of setting their very own restrictions of the values they shall consider giving out without going through the Grant of Representation.
- There are some financial institutions with low limits. There are others encashing property at higher limits for probate.
- Here again, different monetary organizations have varied meanings. This is in regards to the limit of finances that they release without the Grant of Representation.
- Again, some institutions consider the joint value of the estate on the whole. There are others who consider the value of the investments or the assets held by them.
Fundamentally, if a certain financial institution in the estate needs a Grant of Representation, it becomes important for the individuals involved to get one for the entire property. It is only because of this reason that it becomes crucial to diagnose whether a Grant of Representation will be needed early on. The entire procedure can be both expensive and time consuming. Moreover, applying for the Grant without any real need can be frustrating as well. At the same time, it can also be frustrating to handle the estate without the Grant.
Understanding Probate Shortcuts for the Small Estates
There are basically two types of probate shortcuts in regards to small estates and they are as follows:
Claiming Assets with Affidavits
- The first shortcut is claiming property by the use of affidavits. When the entire value of the assets left behind is less than a specific amount, the inheritors of the personal property- which is anything and everything except real estate, might get the ability of skipping the probate procedure completely. Nevertheless, this exact amount is decided as per state laws. Thus, it can vary hugely.
- In case the estate is eligible, the inheritors can come up with a brief document. They can say that they are entitled to a specified item within the property under the state law or will.
- This document is the affidavit and it is signed under an oath. For example, any institution, bank, individual holds the assets of the decedent. When it gets the affidavit along with a copy of a death certificate, it gives away the property or the money held.
Simplified Court Procedure by Probate Lawyer
This second shortcut for the probate procedure is carried out in accordance with the state laws. This is a simpler and quicker version of the probate process. The procedure involves the court anyways. But there is far less control exerted on the settlement of the estate.
A probate lawyer near me 11572 can handle both these shortcuts of probate for small estates. In the majority of the states, these shortcuts or processes are quite simple to handle.
Educating the Estate Executor is Crucial
A small estate is eligible for the two shortcuts of probate mentioned above. It would not be of any advantage if the estate executor is not aware of the availability of such options. And yes, a large number of intimidated and confused executors might turn everything on to the probate lawyer near me 11572. Hence, the estate executors ought to know about these probate shortcuts for small estates.
Getting Case Reviews on Estate Planning
Getting a clear understanding of the small estate probate procedure can be confusing. This is because different laws are prevailing in different states. So, the estate owners should be well aware of the laws of the other states that might not apply to their individual situation. A probate lawyer near me 11572 can help you avoid legal mistakes as well as confusions.