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The process by which a will is authenticated and carried out. That is, probate ensures that the will is in fact the decedent's final wishes and that everyone is receiving what they ought to receive. The executor of the estate usually handles probate, but his/her actions can be challenged in probate court. Some property, notably property co-owned with a spouse, is exempt from probate.


The proof that a will is valid and that its terms are being carried out. Probate is accomplished by an executor/executrix who is paid a fee based on the size of the estate that passes through the will. Certain trusts and jointly owned property pass to beneficiaries without being subject to probate and the attendant fee. See also nonprobate property.


Probate is the process of authenticating, or verifying, your will so that your executor can carry out the wishes you expressed in the document for settling your estate and appointing a guardian for your minor children.

While the probate process can run smoothly if everything is in order, it can also take a long time and cost a great deal of money if your will isn't legally acceptable or it's contested by potential beneficiaries who object to its terms.

If you die without a will, the same court that handles probate resolves what happens to your assets based on the laws of the state where you live through a process known as administration. The larger or more complex your estate is, the greater the potential for delay and expense.


To prove the validity of a will. Probate courts generally oversee decedents' estates, the payment of bills,and the distribution of assets.Some states have exemptions for small estates,which may avoid probate.Other states have no exemptions.Probate will need to be opened in every state in which a decedent owns assets,including real estate,unless there is a specific state exemption.

References in periodicals archive ?
The basic theory here is that people should not be required to account to themselves for their administration of an estate of which they are the sole beneficiaries and it continues the trend in New Hampshire to make the probate process more rational.
A simple technique to avoid the probate process and/or provide certain safeguards during any periods of disability is to transfer one's assets into a revocable trust.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not avoid the probate process by leaving a will.
The probate process generally takes six months, but in exceptional cases may take longer.
He explains the role of the personal representative or trustee and their selection, the probate process, trusts and types, understanding the grief process, involving professionals, preparing for a death and afterward, administering the estate or trust, tax considerations and filing requirements, trust investing, and terminating a trustee's responsibilities.
Banks are duty bound to protect the assets of the deceased and freeze their cash until the Probate process is complete - which can take up to a year.
This legal arrangement allows the client to transfer assets to beneficiaries without having to endure the probate process, which can be expensive and tie up an estate for months and even years after death.
You and your clients can avoid the publicity of the probate process by doing some smart planning while you are alive.
There are several separate costs in the probate process, starting with the filing fee of $320.
Misinformation about probate is so prevalent that it makes sense to educate clients about the probate process first to enable them to make fully informed decisions about all aspects of their estate plan.
Dying without a will can create a more difficult, expensive, and volatile probate process for loved ones who are still grieving.