Estate Litigation And The Probate Process In Texas
When a person passes away in the state of Texas, typically the estate must pass through the probate court. Our probate attorneys at Boon Calk Echols Coleman & Goolsby PLLC in Longview have the experience needed to advise, counsel and assist clients in East and Northeast Texas throughout the probate court process. Additionally, they are seasoned litigators and can assist if disputes arise with the administration of a decedent’s estate.
The Probate Process In Texas
Probate is the legal process in which a person’s estate is administered after their death. The probate process typically includes several steps, including:
- Filing a petition in probate court
- Validating the decedent’s last will and testament
- Identifying an executor or appointing an administrator
- Notifying the various beneficiaries of the estate
- Conducting an inventory and asset appraisal
- Paying off any remaining debt or taxes owed by the estate
- Distributing the remaining assets to the beneficiaries named in the estate, or, if the decedent died without a valid will, according to the intestate succession laws of Texas
If the decedent had a will and named an executor, the executor is responsible for overseeing the administration of the estate. If the decedent died without a will or no executor was named, the court appoints an administrator to oversee the process. Without a will, the probate process can be much more costly. Our probate attorneys can help you navigate this process, guiding you so that you can successfully probate your loved one’s will.
The Advantages Of Having A Trust
While a will has to go through the probate process, assets that are directed to a trust do not. In addition, a will that is administered in probate court will become part of the public record, while money and assets placed into a trust will avoid the scrutiny of the probate process and remain private. While a will names an executor to oversee its administration, a trust names a trustee who will oversee the trust throughout its existence.
When An Estate Requires Litigation
The probate process happens in probate court with a judge to oversee the process. Occasionally, a dispute arises with the administration of a decedent’s estate. A family member may contest the will and attempt to have it changed or even declared void. If and when a conflict arises, or in the event you believe a family member’s will was invalid for some reason, we can fight for your rights and what you think your loved one would have wanted.
Contact Us For A Free Consultation
We know there can be a lot of questions when it comes to the administration of an estate and navigating the probate process. We offer our clients a free, initial consultation to answer any questions you may have and tell you more about how we can help you with your case. Contact us to schedule your free appointment by calling our office at 903-704-0592 or by sending an inquiry through our online form.