Best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX
If you are wondering who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX then consider contacting us at Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC. It has been our primary goal since opening our doors to be the answer to that question. The need for quality probate legal services is very high in Dallas. Hiring a law firm with inexperienced attorneys can be a disaster when it comes to probate issues as decisions will be final. We work with families, individuals, and businesses as each can be involved in matters of probate. To hear more about our estate planning services, including probate, call us today for a free consultation and learn for yourself who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX.
What is probate?
Probate is a judicial process that involves the Court and a person’s will after they pass away. Probate can be avoided, as we’ll talk about shortly, but very often it’s necessary. During the probate process, a court of law determines whether or not a will is valid. Upon declaring that the will is legal and valid, and the naming of an executor if necessary, the Court approves the distribution of the assets. It’s also during the probate process that a will might be contested by someone connected to the will or by someone who can persuasively argue that they should be included in the will. When shopping around for an answer to the question who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX, ask the law firm if they have experience handling probate cases. If unexpected problems arise during probate, it will be best to have an experienced lawyer by your side in order to protect your interests.
How does the probate process work?
Before planning your estate and asking who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, Texas, you may be wondering how the probate process works. The Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC assists individuals and families with their estate planning needs. We are also available to help you with the probate process after the passing of a loved one. When you find out who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX you can also learn about ways to save on estate taxes and how to avoid probate altogether. This can be highly advantageous for your heirs as the probate process will lengthen the time it takes to resolve estate issues and subsequently distribute the assets. Call us for a free consultation with the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX to learn more about the estate planning services that we offer.
What are the steps involved in the probate process?
It can vary somewhat, but the process for probate usually follows these steps:
- If the deceased did not leave a will, then the Probate Court Judge will name an executor for the estate. Usually the person named is an immediate family member of the deceased or a close family friend. The executor named as such will file the appropriate probate papers with the local probate court.
- If the deceased left a will and named an executor, that executor will file the appropriate probate papers with the local probate court.
- The executor will establish and provide proof (if necessary) as to the validity of the will.
- The executor will submit a list to the Court that includes details of the property involved, the outstanding debts of the deceased and their estate, and the individuals who will inherit which assets of the estate.
- The executor will notify creditors, family, and friends of the passing of the individual.
- The executor will locate, identify, secure, and manage the estate’s assets throughout the probate process and until they close the estate. This process can take as little as a month or as much as a year.
- The executor will determine if any of the estate’s assets must be sold in order to pay off the outstanding debts. Identifying those assets is at their discretion. Any cash in the estate can also be used toward the debt.
- The executor will sell assets as necessary to pay off the debt using the cash and assets contained within the estate.
- The executor will request the court to release short-term support funds from the estate if this is necessary until the probate process is completed.
- The executor will distribute the remaining assets contained within the estate to the designated heirs. If there was no will left behind by the deceased, the Probate Court will determine who should inherit the assets. Usually, that will be the surviving spouse, then the children, then the parents or other extended family members.
When is probate unnecessary?
The probate process can be avoided using several different methods which can be explained in more depth after you determine who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX. Some of the most common methods used to avoid probate are these:
- Establish a trust in which you place your assets. There are several different kinds. When searching for who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX be sure to ask if they have experience establishing each type of trust.
- Each state has established its own “small estate threshold” which is a minimum dollar amount. Any estate valued at less than that amount can avoid probate. After you have answered your question about who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX, they can review your estate’s assets to determine if its value is below the threshold.
- When all of your valuable assets are assigned to your beneficiaries and will automatically be transferred to them upon your death, your estate can avoid probate. A probate lawyer can help you with this process.
To learn more about the probate process and consult with the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX, call the Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC.
When comparing legal firms, your search to learn who is the best probate lawyer in Dallas, TX might lead you to Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC. We certainly hope so. Call our office today to schedule a complimentary case review with our probate lawyer to confirm that we are the right choice.