If you have been named the executor of a will, you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed. It's always a big responsibility, more so if a number of beneficiaries are involved. You can choose to navigate the sometimes tricky aspects of probate court by yourself, but in many instances, you should definitely hire a probate attorney.
If the family members or other beneficiaries are unhappy about the will or disagree about how things should be divided, then you would be wise to hire a probate attorney. Unfortunately, money and property often bring out the worst in people. Even the most tight-knit of families can unravel during the probate process. Hiring a lawyer for the estate may prevent family members from contesting the will, a time-consuming and potentially costly process. A lawyer can help settle estate issues and prevent years of legal action.
If you already have a busy life, the responsibility of being an executor can be overwhelming. Even less complex estates require some research and time investment. If you cannot give that kind of time to the process, you should consider hiring a probate lawyer. If you make a mistake or two, the entire action can be delayed for months. A probate lawyer can make sure everything is done appropriately and promptly, protecting you from accusations of negligence from other people involved in the estate.
The list of tasks a probate lawyer can complete for you is impressive. In addition to filing all the necessary court papers, they can collect any life insurance payouts, oversee the payment of final bills and financial obligations, and take care of final income tax filings and issues. An attorney can also help "secure" all the estate's assets, manage estate tax issues, and distribute assets after the bills have been paid and the estate settled. In short, a probate attorney has to manage numerous details without error. If you find this list of tasks daunting, you should probably hire a probate attorney rather than tackle the job yourself.
Being named the executor of a will is a huge responsibility. Not only must you protect the estate's assets, you have to worry about all the beneficiaries' needs as well. Unless you have plenty of time to devote to the process, you should consider hiring a probate lawyer. Retaining expert help is well worth the price and may save your sanity and the happiness of your family.
For more information, contact Leon J Teichner & Associates, P.C. or a similar firm.