TW Law Group is aware that everyone will pass away someday and it is important to be prepared. This includes designating beneficiaries, managing your assets, gifting whatever you wish to your loved ones, and so on. Our Team will want to ensure that you have a secure plan in place in case an emergency does occur because people unexpectedly die or become incapacitated every day. If you or a loved one passes away or becomes unable to communicate, the estate plan which TW Law Group helps to create will determine the course of action that should be taken. In addition to serving Orlando Florida, we also serve cities surrounding Winter Park, Ocala, Windermere, and Melbourne Florida.
Routine Probate Administration
Dealing with the loss of a loved one is emotional and difficult. The process of grieving can be trying and draining. The process of resolution and the process of settling the decedent’s financial affairs make it no easier, but the two are often inseparable. Our clients so frequently find themselves facing an inevitable process, which they must endure nonetheless. All Heirs and creditors alike, have something to gain or lose from this process.
Probate, or estate administration, is the broad term we apply to a variety of procedures used to gather a decedent’s assets, pay their debts and transfer property to their beneficiaries or heirs. The variables of an administration of a decedent’s estate are how long will it take and how much it will cost. These variables can fluctuate dramatically depending on the facts and circumstances, which are unique to each case.
Dependent administrator -the legal representative of an estate. They are usually appointed when the Decedent died without a will. Like an independent executor, they collect all of the Decedent’s assets, resolve proper debts and distribute the remaining assets according to the laws of intestate succession. With a few exceptions, a dependent administrator acts almost entirely under the probate court’s control. Like independent executors, dependent administrators are required to prepare an Inventory, Appraisement and List of Claims, and file proof of required legal notices to creditors. Unlike independent executors, they must obtain approval to sell estate assets. They also must file annual accountings and request court approval to close the estate and distribute the estate to the heirs.
Probate Estate -all of the Decedent’s assets that are subject to his or her last will and testament.
Non-Probate Estate – all of the Decedent’s assets that pass by written contract–assuming the Decedent named a beneficiary–to the persons designated. Bank accounts, investment accounts, life insurance policies, and retirement accounts are common non-probate assets. When properly executed, the written contracts for these accounts allow them to pass to the persons designated by the Decedent, without regard to a will.
Beneficiaries -those persons who are entitled to receive the Decedent’s estate under the Decedent’s last will and testament (and any applicable codicils, which are amendments to a will).
Heirs -those persons who are entitled to receive the Decedent’s estate under the laws of intestacy (the law that applies in the absence of a will).