Probate and Trust Law

Probate is a legal proceeding that is used to wind up a person’s legal and financial affairs after death. In California probate proceedings can take 9-18 months.

The person who is nominated in the Will files a petition with the Superior Court asking to become the Executor. If there is no Will, the Probate Code provides a list of persons who have priority to petition to become administrator.

Estates are appraised by probate referees, who are appointed by the state controller to determine the fair market value of the asset.

Probate section 10810 sets the maximum statutory fee that an attorney can charge for a probate. In cases that are complicated by lawsuits or tax problems the attorney and executor can ask the judge to approve fees that are higher than those set by state law.

The disadvantage of a probate is that the cost than would be required for the administration of a living Trust for an estate valued at the same amount. It usually takes longer to probate an estate than to administer a Trust. An advantage of a probate are that the proceedings are controlled by the judge, who can decide disputes between the heirs and executors.

Many estates do not need to be probated. For information about avoiding probate or to have an experienced attorney handle the probate for you contact The Law Offices Of Raul M. Montes, as he has 32 years experience in Probate and Trust Law.