Menu Contact Law Office of Jeffrey B. Pape, P.C.
Contact a Lawyer

What can I expect during probate?

If your loved one has recently passed away, then you will likely need to prepare yourself for the process of probate.

Most people are unfamiliar with probate, which can make it seem intimidating, confusing and overwhelming. It can be even more upsetting when you are trying to navigate the complicated legal system in light of a devastating loss, too. However, understanding some of the basic aspects of probate can help prepare you for the road ahead.

What happens during probate?

As explained by the California Courts, probate involves collecting and distributing a decedent’s assets. Creditors and taxes will be paid; the personal representative will create an inventory of assets; the courts will transfer property to heirs. Once this is all completed, the courts will receive a report on how the process went and, barring any complications, the process will come to a close.

How long does probate take?

It can take anywhere from about six months to several years to complete probate, depending on the complexity of a person’s estate and whether any challenges are filed.

What do you have to do?

Any interested person may initiate the probate process, which you may or may not decide to do. If you have the will at the time of the person’s death, you will need to deliver the original to the proper court within 30 days. If you wish to challenge a will or trust, you will need to file an objection.

If you are named as the executor or administrator of the estate, you will have several duties. These duties include notifying creditors, notifying heirs and beneficiaries, filing legal paperwork and collecting property.

Outside of these roles, you may have little or nothing to do but wait.

What else should I know?

While these are the broad strokes of probate in California, many issues can and do arise that are not discussed in this post. Because of this, it can be important that you discuss your specific case and questions with an experienced estate planning attorney. With legal guidance, you can get the information you need to make informed decisions about what you should or should not do during probate.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
email us for a response
Review Us
Map Location Image

Law Office of Jeffrey B. Pape, P.C.
642 Pollasky Avenue
Suite 100
Clovis, CA 93612

Toll Free: 800-797-5677
Fax: 559-299-0920
Map & Directions