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Estate Administration & Probate Archives

Is a will enough to simplify estate administration?

Whether Georgia residents are considering creating an estate plan or already have, it may be beneficial to consider whether only having a last will and testament is the right choice. Without a doubt, a will is an essential part of most estate plans, but it may not be the only, or best, way to make estate administration as easy on surviving family members as possible. It may be worth the time and effort to consider taking additional steps to ensure that their wishes are followed without placing any unnecessary burdens on the rest of the family.

Technology can complicate estate administration

The "good old days" of sorting through desk drawers and filing cabinets for important papers seem to be reaching an end. Technology makes it possible for much of a Georgia resident's life to be created, managed and stored online. This may make things easier during life, but after death, it could complicate estate administration.

Does being a stepmom mean probate could get heated?

Now that more people, including many here in Georgia, are divorcing and remarrying later in life, some people only get a short time with their new loves. In many cases, the woman survives her new husband since women still tend to live longer than men do. When it comes to settling a deceased husband's estate, simply being a stepmother may increase the likelihood of probate becoming heated.

Probate dispute keeps Charles Manson in the news after his death

Charles Manson is best known throughout the country, including here in Georgia, for being the mastermind behind the murders of nine people, which were carried out by his followers. Over the years and until his death in Nov. 2017, Manson periodically made the news. Many may have thought that his death would be the last time his name made news, but it is back -- this time in probate court.

The duties of a successor trustee in trust administration

Perhaps your loved one asked you to serve as part of his or her estate plan after death. You may have accepted the position, perhaps believing that you would never have to serve. Then, your loved one died, and now you are called into service as your loved one's successor trustee and face dealing with the duties of trust administration here in Georgia.

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.

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