If your loved one left a will, it must be verified and implemented according to their wishes. This happens during probate, a court process of administering a person’s estate after death. Few understand how things work in probate, yet it is crucial when passing an estate to its heirs.
Therefore, it helps to learn more about probate as the testator, beneficiary or other interested parties. Here are answers to some of the frequently asked questions.
Must all estates go through probate?
Not quite. Probate is not needed if the estate assets are transferred using other estate planning instruments such as trusts or payable-on-death accounts. It also depends on the size of the estate. Small estates have special procedures and may not have to go through probate.
How long does probate take in Indiana?
It depends. There are timelines involved in the probate process, which is why it takes time. For instance, creditors have three months to make claims to an estate, and probate cannot be concluded before then.
You are probably looking at several months, although issues like challenges to the will can stretch the time further.
What could go wrong during probate?
Probate is not always a smooth process. There may be problems such as the valuation of assets in complex estates to executor misconduct when the person in charge of administering the estate abuses their position. There is also the possibility of a contest to the will by an aggrieved party.
What can you do to protect your interests?
In a nutshell, seek proper legal representation. A lot is on the line, and you cannot afford to take any chances. Should you have any questions about the probate process, it is advisable to get proper information and guidance to help you make the right decisions.