When a person who has a will passes away, their estate goes to a process known as probate administration, or simply probate. Probate is a process where a will is recognized, then administered by the designated executor of the will, making sure all beneficiaries noted in the will are accounted for.
While much of what is accounted for in a will is handled in probate, there are some assets and property that do not pass through this legal process, thereby avoiding it altogether. In some cases, such as if a will is contested, probate is completely necessary as well as getting help from a knowledgeable estate planning attorney.
Some property, such as investment and retirement accounts that transfer on death, do not need to go through probate if a specific beneficiary is named. The same goes for other assets like 401Ks and life insurance policies.
In the case of certain trusts, such as revocable and irrevocable trusts, probate may be avoided because assets pass directly to beneficiaries upon death of the person who established the trust, called the grantor.
From suspicions of undue influence to allegations that a will is not valid, there are many reasons why family members might contest a will. When this happens, it creates a legal headache for the other family members involved.
At Bebout, Potere, Cox & Bennion, P.C., we walk you and your family through the process of contesting a will and guide the process toward a favorable resolution. We believe in protecting important family relationships that can otherwise be damaged when probate isn’t handled in an amicable way.
Even though it’s not possible to avoid probate in all cases, you can eliminate the stress of going through the process alone by obtaining the services of a skilled and knowledgeable estate planning lawyer from Bebout, Potere, Cox & Bennion, P.C. The attorneys at our firm have handled hundreds of probate cases over the last six decades, giving us the knowledge necessary to guide families through probate with confidence.
Whether we’re preparing an estate plan so that it can avoid probate or helping families through the process, our lawyers are here to provide compassionate and personalized counsel.
To schedule a free 30-minute consultation, contact our law office in Rochester by calling 248-651-4114. We handle probate matters throughout Oakland County, in nearby Rochester Hills and the surrounding area in Southeast Michigan. We accept credit cards.