Do Not Manage Probate Alone
When a loved one dies, family members may be uncertain of what happens next. Often, they contact an attorney after they have taken steps to initiate the process to determine how the decedent’s assets will be divided. However, a knowledgeable probate attorney can actually help reduce estate settlement costs by assisting with the determination of who should be in charge and helping the family follow the probate process correctly.
Deborah Doliner P.A. provides professional representation to clients throughout the estate administration process, including determining if probate is needed. We serve individuals and families throughout Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Whether you are the personal representative of the estate, the trustee of the decedent’s trust or a beneficiary, we will guide you through all necessary steps to settle your loved one’s estate — even if probate is not required.
Representing You Throughout The Legal Process
The exact process for settling an estate varies from case to case, but may include representation for the following:
- Determining if probate is required — Probate can be required regardless of whether or not the decedent left a will and is often necessary when the decedent owned assets in his or her individual name or when assets do not have a valid beneficiary designation. Other situations also call for probate, and we can carefully evaluate the situation to determine the necessary approach.
- Settling the estate using the appropriate type of probate — Options include:
- Disposition without administration – Used for estates valued at $6,000 or less. An attorney is not required for this process.
- Summary administration — Used for estates valued at $75,000 or less or those where the decedent has been deceased for more than two years. A personal representative is not named, individuals instead can petition the court to direct asset distribution.
- Formal administration — Required for estates valued at more than $75,000. A personal representative is named to settle the estate in accordance with the will or Florida law if there is no will.
- Ancillary administration — For decedents who are not Florida residents, but own property in the state. This is similar to formal administration but only includes Florida property.
- Settling the estate when probate is not required — If probate is not required for your situation, we can assist with other matters, such as addressing your questions regarding what steps need to be taken in order to distribute the assets, determining which obligations need to be satisfied, providing advice on how to terminate an inter vivos trust (often called a living trust), helping with post-mortem estate planning, preparing and reviewing federal and state tax returns, and reviewing post-mortem elections.
We are dedicated to providing guidance on the administration of the decedent’s estate as well as ensuring you understand your rights, responsibilities and obligations.
Why You Should Hire An Attorney As Soon As Possible
In addition to helping a family determine who should be in charge during probate, an attorney can assist throughout the process by deciding which debts and expenses should be paid, establishing an order of priority if aren’t sufficient funds to pay all of the creditor claims and helping heirs sort through the estate settlement and probate proceedings to ensure the decedent’s final wishes are carried out.
The probate process can be complicated and the time after a loved one’s death can be stressful and emotionally draining. Working with an experienced lawyer can help you avoid unnecessary headaches and stress during an already difficult time.
We Make It Easy To Ask For Help
Contact us at 305-662-9997 or by email to discuss your legal needs with a knowledgeable probate attorney. We offer free 15-minute telephone consultations, as well as office consultations for a nominal fee.