Practice Areas

Probate & Estate Administration

Death is always a difficult matter. When a loved one passes away, his or her estate may be required to proceed through a court process either called probate administration (with a will) or estate administration (without a will).

This process is very complex and technical. Without an attorney, the process can be confusing and cause unnecessary delays.

The length of time to complete a probate administration or estate administration often depends on the size and complexity of the estate. In certain circumstances, a streamlined process called a “summary administration” may be available.

Probate and estate administration can be very difficult. While each case is different, most cases involve the following steps:

  • Filing initial documents with the court to start the administration of the estate
  • Appointing a personal representative to act on behalf of the estate
  • Identifying and contacting any heirs at law, beneficiaries and other interested parties
  • Notifying creditors to present any claims to the personal representative
  • Obtaining a tax identification number from the IRS
  • Opening a bank account for the estate
  • Conducting an inventory and appraisal of the estate property
  • Selling any assets of the estate, if necessary or required
  • Filing the decedent’s last personal income tax return
  • Preparing and filing estate tax returns, if necessary
  • Preparing an accounting of receipts and disbursements and a final account to present to the court
  • Distributing the assets to the appropriate person

I can guide and counsel you through this process if required.