Probate Attorneys in Houston, TX
Probate is a term that is frequently associated with estate planning, inheritance, and death. These concepts often come into the picture when one is at the end of their lives and would like to plot out an organized way to distribute their assets as well as have their estate cared for. However, it is reported that many attempt to avoid probate. The question begs, why?
For starters, probate is defined as the process of formally selecting an executor or a personal representative to distribute and manage a decedent’s estate. Many wish to avoid probate due to its time-consuming and expensive nature brought about by taxes, probate court appearances, and other legal complications. Luckily, with the proper legal advice, you can avoid probate.
Planning to avoid probate is a wise decision since it only eats up time, energy, and money, depleting your loved ones and leaving them with no time to grieve. Many factors come into play when it comes to avoiding probate such as age, health, and wealth. Individuals who wish to steer clear of probate have to understand that certain legal steps come into play before this can take effect. One of them is having a living trust and another option is to have a joint and transfer on death accounts.
If you are seeking to avoid probate, understand that it is wise to consult with Houston, TX probate attorneys. Probate attorneys can explain the complicated probate laws and the probate process to you and help you take steps in order to avoid probate, allowing your loved ones to properly grieve and commemorate your life.
What is Probate?
Probate is defined as the legal process involved in giving recognition to a will and appointing a personal representative or executor to manage the decedent’s estate. The personal representative has an array of responsibilities that they have to adhere to such as opening the estate, collecting assets, paying off debts, and closing the estate to name a few. Probate is an expensive and time-consuming process, which is why plenty wish to avoid it.
Are you seeking to avoid probate? If so, it is best to enlist the help of Houston, TX probate attorneys who can guide you towards the best course of action and make sure your loved ones don’t have to go through the grueling process of probate.
How to Avoid Probate?
Probate costs time and money and we don’t want to subject our loved ones to that. If you wish to avoid probate, know that these are the options:
Revocable Living Trust
Having a trust is one of the best ways to ensure that your property won’t be part of the probate estate. Revocable living trusts work by appointing a trustee who owns and manages the property, afterwards transferring it to loved ones without the property having to undergo probate.
Joint Ownership of Property
This kind of technique is an easy way to avoid probate since the property goes to either owner when the other one dies. Joint tenancy with right of survivorship,tenancy by entirety, and community property with right of survivorship are the kinds of joint ownerships that don’t need any additional documents to avoid probate.
Giving property away as gifts is another way to avoid probate. Giving assets away diminishes the value since the higher the monetary value, the more likely it’ll be subjected to probate. Giving things away means you don’t own it anymore, hence helping you avoid probate since it isn’t your property anymore.
Pay on Death Accounts and Registrations
One can convert certain accounts into payable on death accounts through filing in a beneficiary who receives the money directly when you die, hence avoiding probate.
Why Should Probate Be Avoided?
Many have encouraged us to avoid probate, saying that it is the smartest move one can make. Avoiding probate helps you save more time, money, and effort, not to mention allowing your loved ones to properly grieve and celebrate your legacy. Probate costs can take up 5% of estate value, inclusive of attorney fees and court payments.
Can Probate Fees Be Reduced?
There are options one can take in order to reduce probate. Some may recommend that you skip legal assistance but since probate and estate planning are complicated processes, enlisting the help of probate attorneys is still very much advisable, even if you are trying to avoid probate.
Here are some ways on how to reduce probate fees:
- Use Guides- Even if you are enlisting legal help, it’s still wise to know the case yourself. Reading from reputable sources about probate is a great way to arm yourself with information on the topic so you’d know what to expect.
- Affordable Rates– Of course, we don’t recommend going about probate on your own. Hiring a lawyer is always the smartest, safest decision. However, if you are concerned about costs, there is always the option to negotiate for lower fees with an attorney. Legally binding an attorney to this kind of agreement is not possible and only the executor has this power.
How Do I Avoid Probate in Texas?
If there’s anything we know about laws, it’s that it varies from state to state. If you’re from the state of Texas, it’s important to understand how avoiding probate varies from your state to others. In Texas, making a living trust is a way to avoid probate for any asset you own. You must first create a trust document that names someone as your trustee who will take over your property once you’ve passed on. The property will then be controlled by the terms of the trust and upon your death, the trustee can then distribute the assets to heirs without having to undergo probate.
Seek Legal Advice from Probate Attorneys
If you are seeking to avoid probate due to the costs, the hassles, the effort, and the mental and emotional burdens, the wisest decision is to enlist the help of probate attorneys in Houston,TX. Contact Chargois Harper to get in touch with probate attorneys. Probate attorneys can help discuss your options for avoiding probate in order to help your loved ones commemorate you with a light heart. Schedule an appointment with Houston, TX probate attorneys now.
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