According To The Law And The Wishes Of The Deceased: Probate And Estate Administration

Most people know that probate is part of the legal process that takes place after losing a loved one. But the details and purpose of probate are less understood. So what is probate, and how does it impact the family members of the deceased?

A Probate Overview

In simple terms, probate is proving the validity of a will. Therefore, it only applies to estates for which a will has been created. If someone dies without a will, the probate process is replaced by "administration of the estate." In both cases, the processes are necessary to settle a deceased person's debts and other affairs and to transfer property.

In Nevada, probate is typically required if the decedent owned real estate or had total assets worth more than $20,000. While most estates would qualify under these terms, there are ways to avoid probate through careful estate planning.

The Probate Process

After someone passes away, the person in possession of his or her will must submit it to a court within approximately 30 days. Once a family member (or attorney acting on his or her behalf) files a Petition for Issuance of Letters Testamentary, probate can begin.

Steps may include:

  • Publishing death notices and reaching out to creditors of the estate to settle debts
  • Collecting and inventorying all estate assets
  • Preparing final tax returns
  • Distributing the assets to heirs and beneficiaries
  • Selling certain assets to settle debts, if necessary and allowed
  • Filing paperwork for all of the above steps and many more

Unless there are complicating factors, the probate process can be completed in about four to six months. Although you aren't legally required to work with an attorney, most people find that the process is complex and detailed enough that the help of an estate lawyer is needed.

Let Us Do The Hard Work For You

After losing a loved one, your focus should be on working through grief and being supportive to those you love. At Avalon Legal Group we are ready to oversee the entire probate process for you, minimizing your stress and responsibility and ensuring that no detail is overlooked. When an estate includes property outside of Nevada, we can facilitate a smooth resolution of those assets, as well as locally held assets.

Contact Us Today To Schedule Your Initial Consultation

Avalon Legal Group is based in Las Vegas and serves clients throughout the surrounding area, including Henderson and Clark County, as well as clients outside of Nevada with probate concerns in our state. To discuss your probate or estate planning needs with an experienced and attentive attorney, call us at 702-522-6450 or contact us online. Se habla español.