As executor of an estate, you may find yourself swamped by phone calls and court hearings. When there is a will, everything is much easier as the courts don’t have to decide as much. If there’s no will, you’re going to have a lot more paperwork.
To take some of the stress off of your plate, there are a some things you need to know before the probate process starts.
1) What Does Probate Mean?
Probate is a process of administration. Essentially, the executor is in charge of organizing the estate of someone who has passed, which means the executor has to manage the deceased’s money and belongings. After taxes and debts, the executor then distributes the capital and belongings as the inheritance.
The deceased’s will designates the executor as someone whom they have chosen to be in charge of this process.
2) What to Do About the Will
An executor makes sure to follow the wishes of the deceased. This procedure starts after there is an assessment of whether or not there is a valid will. A valid will needs to have been signed by the deceased and must have had at least two witnesses present at the signing. The signing of the will must have been when the departed was at least 18 and of sound mind.
The executor then follows the instructions given in the will.
3) What if There’s No Will?
An assessment is made regarding whether there is a valid will. When there is no will, the deceased has died “intestate.” A determination must be made on who will inherit according to Arizona’s intestacy law. Consulting an attorney familiar with your state’s laws will give you the most up to date information as intestacy law can be complicated.
If there’s no will, the deceased’s spouse or next of kin will become the executor. There will then be a list of those eligible to inherit, such as the deceased’s spouse and children. Stepchildren and unmarried partners typically face difficulties when claiming the inheritance.
Probate estates where there is no will take longer in court. If there is no spouse or heir to be executor, the estate will automatically go to the State of Arizona.
4) Letting Heirs and Creditors Know
An executor has to do a few things to help the probate process along. You’ll have to let the creditors and heirs know about the probate process. Creditors are those who have a chance to make a claim on the estate as well as those who do not think that the will is actually what the deceased would have wanted.
You can let creditors and heirs know about the probate by contacting them directly or putting a notice in the paper.
5) Letting Heirs and Cr1) Can You Sell a House While in Probate?
Yes, it’s possible! But the proper steps have to be taken. If a property is intestate, then it will go through the probate courts.
However, if you are the executor and there is a will, then it’s much easier to petition the courts to sell the property. If you sell a house while it is in probate, it can help you avoid court costs.
Many heirs are surprised when they inherit property and may wish to sell it. We understand that looking after property can be a lot to handle when you already have your own!
Are you interested in selling your house while in probate? Fill out our easy form and arrange a free property viewing.