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Estate Administration & Probate Archives

Understanding how your will works in probate

Like other Georgia residents, you may have been told at some point that you need to create and execute a last will and testament. You were told that this would allow you to designate how your estate is distributed during probate. What you may not have been told is exactly how that happens. It may help to understand a last will and testament's use in probate court before completing your estate plan.

Probate has begun. Do you feel something just isn't right?

After a loved one passes away, surviving family members often experience a myriad of emotions. During this time, a probate will may also be started in order to settle that Georgia resident's estate. As you find out more about the will, you may begin to suspect that something just is not right. You may begin to wonder if you should challenge the will.

Not all estate administration takes place in a courtroom

Many Georgia residents will ask that a trusted individual take on double duty after they pass away. You may have been asked and accepted the responsibilities as both executor of the estate and trustee of a trust. In this case, you will be responsible for more than just a probate as you work through your estate administration duties on behalf of your loved one.

Consider avoiding probate for the sake of surviving loved ones

Estate planning may not be high on the list of things that most people want to do, but it is necessary. Not only will it keep the state of Georgia from deciding what happens to an individual's assets upon death, but it could also be structured in such a way that probate may not be necessary. Many people do not understand that during the process, surviving family members will not have access to any assets that are subject to the probate process.

Save password? For better estate administration, yes

The outcomes of legal cases addressing new or evolving situations and technology often set precedents for how laws should be applied moving forward. Estate administration appears to have experienced just such a precedent, with a recent court ruling affecting how emails might be handled after death. The case also highlights the importance of addressing how digital assets should handled.

Understanding your role as an executor in estate administration

Being chosen as an executor is both a privilege and a responsibility. The fact that a loved one decided that you were the best person to undertake the estate administration duties after his or her death may have felt like a honor, but you also need to understand what it will entail. Fortunately, you do not have to fulfill your duties alone as you go through the Georgia probate process.

Appointing a guardian for a minor child during probate

When making out a will, most Georgia parents appoint one or more individuals to care for their children after death. Of course, if the other parent survives, he or she would most likely continue to parent the children unless found to be unfit, uninterested or otherwise unable to serve their best interests. If there is any question regarding this issue, it can be dealt with during the probate.

Can you avoid probate if your loved one had no will?

When a Georgia resident dies without leaving behind a last will and testament, surviving families may have to seek the court's assistance in reconciling the estate. Then again, that may not be necessary. It might be possible to avoid a lengthy and time-consuming probate process if everyone can get along.

What if the will is contested during probate? Who has standing?

Perhaps you were appointed as the executor of a Georgia resident's estate. That person has died, and you have begun the probate process. Now, you hear that someone wants to contest the will. First, you need to know that not just anyone can file an objection to the last will and testament. The person filing the objection must somehow be affected by the current will.

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The Bowden Spratt Law Firm, P.C.
191 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 4400
Atlanta, GA 30303
Toll Free: 877-920-1051
Local: 404-523-8337
Fax: 404-523-8323
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