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An Overview of the Probate Process

There are a variety of options available to you when it comes to handling your final affairs. When you choose to delegate your final wishes in a will, your loved ones will be required to go through probate. Those who fail to draft a will may also be subjected to the probate process.

Probate is a legal process that involves validating a deceased individual’s will or appointing an individual to handle their estate if they do not have a will. Creditors have the opportunity to appear at the probate court if they are making a claim to request payment from the estate.

During the probate process, the following assets will be involved:

  • Any assets that were held in the deceased’s name, and nobody else’s
  • Half of the assets that were registered with the deceased’s spouse
  • Any non-registered assets

The probate process involves some assets, but not the following:

  • Any assets that are held in joint tenancy
  • Any assets that are listed in a living trust
  • Any assets where there has been a beneficiary appointed
  • Any assets that the deceased was listed as the trustee in a bank or credit union account
  • Assets that were listed as “transfer on death” or “payable on death”
  • Any assets that are classified as community property for a married couple

When you do not have a will, the probate courts will appoint an individual who will be responsible for handling the deceased’s bills and assets. This is typically the closest relative. When you have a will, the individual who handles the estate’s affairs is called the executer, however, when there is no will, the individual appointed is known as the administrator. These two individuals have the same responsibilities in managing the estate.

Contact Gaudy Law in Upland for all of your California legal needs. Whether you are in need of assistance through the probate process, creating a will or trust, or going over estate planning, we will provide you with the representation you deserve with one of our experienced probate attorneys in Upland.