Probate Lawyer, AZ
It is essential to identify a probate lawyer Phoenix, AZ residents can trust when handling the emotional complications of grief and the legal aspects of resolving a family member’s estate. The loss of a loved one can be overwhelming. It can also be extremely stressful and difficult when you have to deal with the broad range of legal issues that follow. This includes distributing the deceased’s assets and property.
The right probate lawyer Phoenix AZ has come to count on in this situation can minimize your concerns and give you peace of mind during one of the most challenging times of your life. Arizona probate law refers to the process of administering and distributing an individual’s estate which includes their assets and property. Services that a probate lawyer in Phoenix, AZ offers often include:
- Working with the estate’s executor to distribute the property as specified in a valid will and testament.
- Assistance with the resolution of issues surrounding the will and related claims against the estate.
- Representing a family member who claims interest in the estate if the deceased left no known will.
Judicial proceedings in Arizona allow for the probate process to manage how the creditors are paid and the distribution of the assets to the beneficiaries. A probate lawyer Phoenix, AZ trusts can represent one or more heirs and protect their rights throughout the process.
Some types of assets that are not usually subject to probate include:
- Real property held in joint tenancy with right of survivorship
- Life insurance
- Individual retirement accounts
- Bank accounts held in community property
- Joint tenancy with survivorship rights bank accounts
- Real property with right of survivorship held in community property.
The formal probate process can be overwhelming and extremely complicated for someone not familiar with the process, which is why hiring a probate lawyer Phoenix, AZ residents turn to is extremely important.
Probate Lawyer, AZ
A Phoenix probate lawyer can help you with estate planning so that your loved ones don’t have to go through the probate process after your passing. Avoiding probate is one of the most common reasons why people consult a probate lawyer Phoenix, AZ residents have turned to for years. The right lawyer can help manage even the most complex estate planning.
Some of the most popular methods of avoiding probate in Arizona include:
- Create a living trust which allows the property to be controlled by the trust rather than probate
- Ensure property is held in joint ownership, also referred to as joint tenancy, with the right of survivorship.
- Manage securities with transfer-on-death registration which can be articulated on your beneficiary form
- Add bank account payable-on-death designations
- Use Arizona transfer-on-death deeds
Probating in More than One State
In most cases, the probate process may only be conducted in the state in which the decedent lived. This is a good thing, because multiple probate processes are stressful. When possible, it’s helpful to only have to go through probate in one state.
Unfortunately, however, if the decedent lived in one state and owned real estate (or other immovable property) in a different state, a second probate process may need to be opened in that state. Courts in Arizona generally cannot issue orders concerning property in other states because that property would be outside the courts’ jurisdiction. The phenomenon of probate occurring in more than one state is known as “ancillary probate.”
In most cases, you’ll need to hire a separate, local attorney to handle ancillary probate for each state in which the decedent owned property. If your loved one had a vacation home here in Arizona, for instance, you’ll need to hire an AZ probate lawyer to handle probate (preferably one practicing in the county where the real estate is located). As experienced AZ probate lawyers, the team at Kamper Estrada, LLP is ready to handle primary as well as ancillary probate matters in Arizona.
Probate Timelines in Arizona
The length of time that probate will take depends on the complexity of the estate and the type of probate required. Probate needs to be kept open (by law) for at least four months, because estate creditors need time to file claims.
If the estate qualifies for informal probate and the process remains uncontested, it can usually be completed in about six to eight months. However, if probate is contested and needs to go through the “formal” process, it can take considerably longer to complete.
Why Hiring An Attorney is Important
The length of time required for probate is reason enough to hire an experienced AZ probate lawyer. Most people don’t have months to devote to the process. But like many legal matters, probate is also too complex for non-attorneys to handle on their own. Any mistake or oversight could set the process back months and prove to be costly. Therefore, hiring an AZ probate lawyer to complete the probate process is a smart financial investment.
The Critical Role of Estate Planning
If you are reading this page as someone who needs help with probating a loved one’s estate, it is already too late to think about estate planning for that person. However, you can and should be thinking about planning your own estate if you have not already done so.
The simple fact is that thorough estate planning can often eliminate the need for probate, or at least make it considerably easier and faster. In addition to ensuring that your final wishes are carried out, estate planning greatly reduces the burden your loved ones may face after you are gone. And that is a gift that nearly all of us would be proud to leave behind.
None of us knows what the future holds. Therefore, it is a good idea to start your estate plan sooner rather than later.
Get Help Now from Kamper & Estrada, PLLC Probate Lawyers
Do you need to plan ahead for probate or get more information about how a loved one’s estate will be handled in probate? Don’t wait to ask a probate lawyer Phoenix, AZ community members trust when it comes to complex estate planning concerns.
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