3 Reasons To Hire A Probate Attorney After The Passing Of A Loved One

Posted on: 31 July 2016

If a loved one graciously leaves you as the executor of their estate, you may think that everything after their passing will be smooth sailing. However, it is quite common for the average person to underestimate just how complex being designated the executor of the estate can actually be, which can lead to a lot of problems. Before you step up to the plate as estate executor, it is a good idea to at least consult with a probate attorney. However, there are a handful of reasons why it will be best to go ahead and make a plan to employ a probate attorney's services right off the bat.

If there is a chance family members will contest.

Most of the time, once someone is designated as executor of someone's estate, the rest of the family will be just fine with whatever decisions are made. However, in some instances when the executor is someone who is not related or possibly not as closely related as other family members, the executor will be met with resistance. It is possible for family members to rebuke specific designations or argue against things in the will if they are not in agreement with the executor designation. These battles can get really complex and ugly, and are definitely not something you should face without a probate attorney to help you.

If the value of assets is nowhere near enough to handle the debts of the deceased.

If you are left as executor over an estate, this also means you assume the financial responsibilities of any debt left behind. While in most cases, whatever the person leaves behind will be enough to cover debts once the assets are sold, in some cases, the amount of debt will far outweigh the value of the assets. This is not a burden you want to step into without the helpful guidance of an attorney who can help you find laws that may give you some leeway where the debt is concerned.

If the estate involves things like businesses or commercial real estate. 

Your loved one has left you as executor and also left you with their personal assets. While things like taking control of their house and vehicles may not be a big deal, sorting out the complexities of things like businesses or commercial property can be a major undertaking. Therefore, if your loved one's estate includes anything complex like this, it is best to have an attorney help you through the process. 

You can go to websites like probate law databases or attorney sites for more information.