Why Families May Need a Probate Attorney in Plano, Texas
When someone passes away, all of their personal possessions, assets, bank accounts, and property become their estate. Probate is the method to legally transfer the estate’s contents from the deceased person to their heirs or beneficiaries. Many people leave a will, with a named executor to disperse the estate as the deceased wishes.
However, sometimes there are problems. The executioner may be unfamiliar with Texas probate laws and not understand their responsibilities. OR, perhaps your loved one died intestate or without a will. This is where a probate lawyer in Texas can help.
As licensed probate lawyers, we are well-versed in Texas probate laws. Our role is to guide the executor along the process, answering their questions and providing explanations of each step in probate.
Some things our legal team helps with include the following:
- Appraising the property of the person who passed away
- Identifying and securing that person’s assets
- Determining and paying if inheritance or estate taxes are owed
- Making final distributions after paying all bills and taxes
- Handling the proceeds from life insurance
- Preparing necessary court documents
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Krupa Downs Law – Helping You Plan, Protect, and Prepare
Probate and Estate Administration
It's important to choose a personal representative for a person soon after they die. Usually, this role is fulfilled by the executor of the will. An estate needs a representative; without a will, the Texas courts appoint someone. This person is responsible for estate administration, locating, valuing, and allocating the estate.
If you're appointed as an estate representative, whether through a will or by a judge, you may need help – and that's where we come in.
Wills, Trusts & Estate Planning
Estate planning addresses the division of your estate, including putting legal protections in place to reduce your tax burden and protect your heirs. Estate planning doesn't just go into effect after you die. It also includes drafting legal protections in case you become incapacitated, like a living will and an advanced directive.
We work with your current financial picture and goals to create the right legal protections for you and your family.
Your Plano wills and trusts lawyer from Krupa Downs Law drafts a will to protect your family and heirs, including naming a qualified executor (which can be an attorney or other licensed professional. It doesn't have to be a family member). We write it in accordance with Texas laws to ensure there are no hurdles to passing your assets to your heirs.
A trust is a legal relationship in which property and assets are held by a third party known as the trustee. Assets placed in a trust are removed from the general estate and subject to the terms and disbursal of the trust. A trust can protect assets from creditors and estate taxes and direct specific assets to be passed to a beneficiary at an allotted time.
Estate Administration and Probate in
Families mourning the loss of a loved one may need professional help with estate administration and probate. Our licensed Texas attorneys guide you through the process.
Muniment of Title Probate
For straightforward, simple estates, muniment of title probate is a good option. In a muniment of title probate, a probate judge validates the will and transfers the stated titles to the beneficiaries. This is best for smaller estates containing no bonds or publicly traded securities.
Probate court oversees dependent administration, ensuring the estate is settled per Texas estate law. If a dispute arises or a creditor petitions the estate for a debt, then the oversight provided by the dependent administration is a good choice.
Small Estate Affidavits
These are forms to expedite the settlement of a small estate, moving it quickly through probate. Small estate affidavits eliminate the necessity for formal probate and are typically used when someone dies intestate. To take advantage of this method, the estate must contain less than $75,000 in property, with the exclusion of homestead and exempt property.
Learn More from a Plano Probate Attorney
Estate planning protects your own interests and provides a legacy to pass on to your heirs and beneficiaries. Krupa Downs Law, PLLC, Probate, Estate Planning attorney in Plano, Texas, has more information on how these different parts of an estate plan can help.