An estate executor is usually not a role one chooses willingly. It is often appointed by a court shortly after a loved one’s death. While this sudden appointment can come at one of the worst times in life, it’s important to honor your loved one and make sure their estate is properly handled. A Cerritos probate lawyer can help you and your family during this difficult time.
Sakamoto & Ruelas, APC, has three seasoned attorneys with over 25 years of experience in estate planning, probate litigation, and trust administration. All three members of the firm strive to approach each case with compassion and care.
Due to their experience in family mediation, each attorney treats every case with unique attention. To better serve the local community, Sakamoto & Ruelas, APC, works with clients in English, Korean, and Spanish.
The term “probate” means legitimizing a will in a court of law. Once this is done, the estate’s assets are divided depending on the terms stated in the will. To aid in this effort, the court usually appoints an executor, sometimes referred to as a personal representative. This person represents the deceased person’s estate and is allowed to act in place of the deceased person.
If any of these situations apply to you, then it might be helpful to contact a probate attorney:
Regardless of your circumstances, probate law can be a daunting process that many go through while grieving the loss of a loved one. Give yourself peace of mind and room to focus on your family by hiring an attorney.
A probate lawyer can help with a wide variety of tasks, including:
Probate and estate planning are two different things. Probate law deals with a finished will after the person who wrote it dies. Estate planning deals with the drafting of wills and trusts before the person dies. Both processes are just as important, but it’s important to know the difference when contacting an attorney.
A trust allows the deceased person to transfer all of their property to an external account for a living person to manage. A will is meant to distribute all of the assets to different beneficiaries instead of putting the assets in an account.
In some cases, it can be beneficial to have both a will and a trust. A trust can help you avoid estate taxes and set up a process to manage your assets before death.
In Cerritos, the deceased person’s estate pays attorney fees and other fees associated with probate. While most of these fees are paid after the process is finished, there may be expenses that need to be addressed before the estate covers the cost. The average Californian personal representative pays $2,500 in out-of-pocket expenses, and the estate usually covers the rest. This number includes the starting court filing fee, a probate referee, a bond, and a final court filing fee.
It is not legally required to hire a lawyer for probate proceedings. However, the process can be extremely complicated without a legal background. A probate attorney can help with all the complicated paperwork so the family can focus on other preparations for the deceased loved one. It is crucial to submit paperwork in a timely fashion in order for the litigation to succeed.
In probate court, a lawyer can help the personal representative carry out the wishes of the deceased person’s will. An attorney is involved in different parts of the probate process depending on the individual case. If a case is simpler, then the lawyer can simply serve as an advisor to the executor. If the case involves more complicated assets and debts, then the lawyer can be more hands-on.
If a person is interested in drafting their will while they are still alive, then they should contact an estate planning attorney. They specialize in creating wills and trusts. A probate attorney is used when the person who has a will is already deceased, and the executor needs help filing the case and distributing assets.
Don’t let a complicated probate proceeding get in the way of spending time with your family while grieving the loss of a loved one. Contact the compassionate team at Sakamoto & Ruelas, APC, to discuss your options as an executor or personal representative.