What Does a Probate Attorney Do?

A probate attorney is a legal professional that aids the family and relatives of a deceased person manage the legal troubles related to estate planning. Their role is to help ensure that property is allotted in accordance with state law and settle any disputes that may arise. There are many ways to find a reputable and experienced Probate Attorney near you. One way is to ask for referrals from friends and family members. You can also search online or scan the local newspaper for advertisements. Another option is to use a lawyer referral service.

While a probate attorney is not required in all states, hiring one can help ease the stress of dealing with an estate and resolving any legal disputes that might occur. A probate lawyer can also help with other issues that might arise during the process, such as a dispute over a will or a legal challenge from beneficiaries or debtors.

The duties of a probate lawyer are diverse and depend on a variety of factors, including the size of the estate, the complexity of state laws, and whether or not the deceased passed away testate (with a will) or intestate (without a will). Some of the most common tasks that a probate attorney will perform include locating and gathering all assets of the decedent, closing bank accounts, locking security boxes, securing appraisals for jewelry and real estate, selling or distributing personal items, and preparing and filing probate court documents. In addition, a probate attorney can help the executor or administrator of the estate navigate complex legal processes and heir rights.

Often, probate attorneys will charge a flat fee or request a percentage of the gross value of the estate. Some states regulate this by statute, but these fees can still be a significant expense. A good probate attorney should be able to explain the fees they charge and provide a written fee agreement.

In some cases, a lawyer may choose to negotiate the fee with the estate’s beneficiaries or the creditors of the estate. This can help reduce costs and avoid conflicts of interest. A reputable and experienced attorney will be able to work with all parties involved to reach a resolution.

When choosing a probate attorney, it is important to consider their level of experience and reputation. You can do this by asking for references from previous clients and examining their online reviews. In addition, you should always be sure to compare fees. An attorney’s fees should be based on demand and their reputation, but they shouldn’t be so high that they are unaffordable.

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