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What is Probate?

Denver probate attorneyWhat is probate? Probate refers to the legal process that occurs after a person has passed away. During probate, the court will carefully examine any will that may be in place to determine whether that will is legitimate (if there is a will in place). Once this matter has been decided:

  • The deceased person’s (i.e., the decedent) assets will be inventoried.
  • Some or all of the assets may be appraised to determine their value.
  • The estate’s debts, taxes, and other expenses will be paid out from the assets of the estate.
  • The remaining assets will be distributed to the beneficiaries as laid out in the existing will or, when no legal will exists, per the terms of the applicable state laws.

Probate can quickly become a complicated and possibly contentious process, especially when there may be significant assets, disputes over the will or tensions between beneficiaries. As a result, it’s best that people dealing with probate hire the Denver estate planning lawyers at Colorado Estate Matters, Ltd. to protect their interests and ensure that the process is resolved with minimal emotional and financial impacts.

Issues and Problems with Probate

There are some specific issues and problems that can arise from going through the probate process after a loved one passes away. Some of these challenges can include (but not are limited to):

  • The duration of probate – Probate proceedings can take anywhere from a few months to upwards of a year to be resolved. In fact, the more assets associated with a decedent’s estate and the more potential beneficiaries who stand to gain from the estate, the longer the probate proceedings could last. While the substantial length of time that probate can take can be emotionally draining, especially when a decedent’s loved ones are ready to try to move on with their lives, it can also be problematic in that all of the assets associated with the estate will be tied up in court for the duration of the proceedings. That can present serious financial hardships for people in some cases.
  • The costs of probate – Although some states have caps on the costs of probate, it’s possible that the costs of probate can be a percentage of the estate before taxes and other debts are paid from the estate. This can ultimately mean that probate costs can drain an estate of significant financial resources that would have otherwise gone to deserving beneficiaries.
  • The public nature of probate – Matters of probate are inherently part of public record, which means that anyone who wants to find out the details of an estate going through probate can review the court records to see how much an estate is worth and who is getting what. This can create a variety of issues and challenges for people who may prefer that these matters remain relatively private.

Despite these challenges associated with probate, however, people should be aware that, by working with a Denver probate attorney at Colorado Estate Matters, Ltd., they will be able to minimize the potential problems that these proceedings may spur while resolving these matters as expeditiously as possible.

Choose Our Attorneys at Colorado Estate Matters, Ltd.

When you are preparing for probate, don’t hesitate to contact us at Colorado Estate Matters, Ltd.. We are experienced and skilled at standing up for our clients’ interests throughout the probate process and helping them to resolve these proceedings as efficiently and favorably as possible. Our primary goal is to help our clients get through probate with minimal costs and complications so they can focus on their future.

Contact Us

You can learn more about our array of probate legal services by meeting with our estate planning lawyers for an initial consultation. To schedule this meeting, call us at (303) 713-9147 or email us using our convenient online contact form.

From our offices in Denver, we serve clients throughout the southwest and southeast Metro Area, including (but not limited to) people in Highlands Ranch, Littleton, Castle Rock, Parker, Aurora, Greenwood Village, Englewood, Centennial, Wheat Ridge, Golden and Arvada.

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