The mere fact that you were named Executor or Trustee by a decedent does not mean you are legally up to the task of handling the probate and trust administration processes. By working with a strong Bryan probate attorney, you will be much better equipped for the challenge, and not feel like the task is quite as daunting.
What Is Probate and Trust Administration?
Probate and trusts are two separate matters that are activated by the death of a grantor. Probate is a legal process by which the court receives and reviews the will, determines what assets exist, and decides how they are to be distributed. It is, in essence, a process whose purpose is to make sure that everything is in order. When the court is satisfied of this fact, it orders for the distribution of assets to beneficiaries in accordance with the will.
In some cases, a decedent does not leave a will. Such a person is said to die intestate. It is then up to the probate court to decide how the estate should be dispositioned. Generally, the spouse holds first priority for assets, and then any children, grandchildren, and parents. There is no guarantee in this situation that the desires of the decedent will be carried out, however; hence the value of having a will.
Trust administration is the handling of assets in the will. The trustee is responsible for paying any taxes, investing any assets if so instructed, and then distributing the assets in the trust in accordance with the instructions. Once this is accomplished, his role is complete. In some cases a trustee is instructed to set up a long-term payment plan to a particular beneficiary. This is often the case when one child is not good at managing money.
We Can Help You with Your Probate and Trust Administration
If you have been appointed as a trustee or executor, it is very important that you have a clear understanding of your role and assistance in carrying out your duties effectively. To do otherwise exposes you to potential legal difficulties. Call a Bryan probate lawyer today at Peterson Law Group: 979-703-7014 or 936-337-4681.