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Home » Turner Law Offices Blog » 5 Tips to Make Probate Painless

5 Tips to Make Probate Painless

tn Probate and Estates

Have a family member whose estate just went into probate?  Don’t worry. Although probate can be a drawn-out, difficult process, here are some tips to help make everything as smooth as possible.

#1 – Immediately Notify All Creditors

When an estate enters the probate process, all records and proceedings immediately become public notice.  Creditors demanding they get their fair share can become an extreme hassle, so the best idea is to go ahead and notify all of them of the death.  Let them all know what’s happening right from the start rather than having them finding out in a staggered process.  The entire estate is left open and vulnerable as long as they have yet to be informed, and having unexpected claims show up after a few months into the probate process can really slow things down.

#2 – Have the Entire Inventory Appraised

Right alongside notifying all creditors, you need to have the estate’s entire inventory appraised from the very beginning.  The cash assets can be appraised by yourself, however the probate court will appoint a referee to appraise everything else.  You need to know the entire scope of the estate in order to accurately navigate probate, so have everything appraised from the start.

#3 – Make Filing Deadlines a Top Priority

Meeting your deadlines needs to be as important as remembering your anniversary (maybe even more so…).  The probate process lays out very specific deadlines for its proceedings, and missing a deadline will lead to more court appearances, which leads to an even longer, drawn-out probate, which leads to headaches and unhappiness.  Also, there are dangers of family members losing faith in your competency as executor if you miss deadlines, and a feuding family is the exact thing nobody wants during probate.

#4 – Maintain Accurate Records

This one should be an obvious given, but it needs to be said to make sure it’s a priority: keep exact records of dollar spent.  Know exactly how much is owed to creditors, and the exact amount that they are paid.  As soon as the creditor claim period expires, you will be able to file the final report with the probate court, closing the estate and bringing the probate process to a speedy end.

#5 -Hire an Experienced Probate Attorney

This should be done from the very start.  You can attempt to handle probate on your own, but realize that it is a complicated and very long process. Having a probate attorney on your side would not only ensure that you have an experienced guide throughout the entire probate process, but you would have someone who’s sole job is to keep up with the entire process and make sure everything runs smoothly.  A probate attorney would ensure that all of the deadlines are met, and that the entire estate is properly inventoried.

If you are about to have to tackle probate, don’t try handling it alone. Call us today to speak with an experienced probate attorney to find how they can ensure that your probate is as quick and smooth as possible.

Call 615-259-2660

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