Probate is a process that is designed to wind up the affairs of a deceased person and to facilitate the orderly transfer of a person’s assets after an individual passes away. When someone dies, either intestacy law or that person’s last will and testament will determine who inherits assets. A process must occur in which a will is validated or in which heirs are identified so the right people can inherit. There must also be a chance for creditors to make claims, for an estate to be valued, and for any and all taxes on the estate to be assessed. The probate process is the process by which all of these different things take place. Learn more here about what probate is and how the process works.
process of probating a will also involves taking steps in the probate court to determine who exactly should inherit what property, as well as what taxes should be assessed on an estate. The executor of an estate oversees the probate process and files appropriate paperwork with the court. The executor of an estate also takes responsibility for managing probate assets during the probate process and for facilitating the transfer of those assets to the new owners according to the instructions the deceased left in the will. Find out more here about what it means to probate a will.
The executor of an estate is responsible for filing court paperwork, seeing the will through the probate process, managing the assets of the deceased person, and facilitating the transfer of the assets to new owners. The executor of an estate has a lot of responsibility and has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of heirs or beneficiaries and not to enrich himself. If you fail in your duties as an executor, you could potentially be removed by the court from the job of executor.
In some cases, you could also end up facing a lawsuit against you for a breach of fiduciary duty. You do not want to take a chance on facing legal consequences for failing to fulfill your role as executor, so if you have been named as executor in a deceased person’s will, you’ll want to ensure that you talk with an attorney before you agree to serve in this role and you’ll want to get legal help from a Vermont probate attorney to fulfill your obligations throughout the probate process. Find out more here about what happens if you fail in your executor duties.
There are many reasons why you might want to avoid Vermont probate. The process can cost a significant amount of money, thereby reducing the value of an inheritance. The process can take a long time, leaving heirs or beneficiaries without funds they may need if they were counting on an inheritance. The process can also result in a will being contested and the deceased’s wishes not being respected- which is much less likely to happen with other methods of transferring property such as creating a trust or using joint ownership. Find out more here about why you might want to avoid Vermont probate.
You should be represented by a Burlington probate attorney for both small and large estates. An attorney can help you to understand if you must go through the full probate process after a death and can guide you through successfully fulfilling any and all legal requirements for the transfer of assets to new owners.
Living trusts can help you to avoid the probate process. When you create living trusts, assets that are held within the trust will not need to transfer through the probate process. Instead, the trust assets will be able to transfer through the trust administration process. The trust administration process is a quicker process that does not require the oversight of a probate court judge; no judge becomes involved unless there is a problem.
Trust administration makes the process of transferring assets more efficient, more timely, and more private. However, creating a living trust and transferring assets through trust administration and outside of probate does not mean that those assets won’t be part of the taxable estate, so it is important to understand the limitations of the protections that a living trust will provide. Find out more about how Vermont living trusts can help you to avoid the probate process.