What is Probate?
Probate is the process of settling a person's estate through court-ordered supervision after they've passed. The purpose of the probate process is well-intended, as it was designed to prevent anyone from fraudulently taking from someone's estate after they die. Once an estate begins going through this process, the courts will essentially freeze the estate until a judge can determine:
- That all of the property in the estate has been properly identified and appraised.
- Creditors that the decedent owes have been paid.
- All of the decedent's taxes have been paid off.
- All beneficiaries have been notified.
Once all of the above are cleared, the judge can order the distribution of property and closing of the estate — concluding the probate process.
Why Hire a Probate Lawyer?
With many steps and factors involved, the probate process can quickly become complex and overwhelming. It's important to work with highly-qualified probate attorneys that can help you sort through all of the relevant estate matters — including making sure that all beneficiaries of the estate are identified and assets are distributed properly. If your loved one has a will or trust in place, some assets could be exempt from probate, which you'd want to know.
As experienced probate attorneys, we've worked with clients across the communities of Athens and the surrounding areas by guiding them through each step of the probate process. It’s our goal to help them fully understand the situation and what to expect for themselves and their family. With our counsel in your corner, we'll make sure that all taxes and creditors are paid so that the remaining estate can be distributed quickly and efficiently, according to your loved one's wishes. That way you and your family can begin to move forward.