No matter your probate concerns, rely on the law firm of Francis E. Sweeney, Jr., Esq., LLC in Cleveland, OH for professional assistance. Our probate attorneys will go the extra mile to take care of your needs. Rest assured that we will guide you through the legal process and help you every step of the way when you hire us for legal support.
Probate is a legal process which includes Guardianships and Estates, where the estate of a deceased person is resolved as to that person's will, and the person's financial assets and property are distributed to his or her family or others accordingly.
A probate interprets the instructions of the deceased, decides the executor as the personal representative of the Estate, and tends to the interests of heirs and others who may have claims against the estate.
There are time factors involved in filing and objecting to claims against the estate.
Real estate or other types of property may need to be sold to allow for correct distribution of the deceased's assets to those with claims and/or to pay debts.
There may be a lawsuit pending over the deceased's death or there may have been previous suits that are now continuing. Separate procedures may be required in contentious suits.
Estate taxes, gift taxes or inheritance taxes may have to be considered if an estate surpasses certain thresholds.
Costs of the administration, income tax on interest, and property taxes are deducted from assets before distributions are made to the heirs.
Certain other assets may simply require transference from the deceased to his or her heirs.
Probate Court processing usually takes several months and can take longer in complicated cases. One way to avoid probate issues is to have a living trust. A Living Trust is a form of advance directive. Assets can be passed outside probate by establishing P.O.D. (paid on death) designations on bank accounts and T.O.D. (transfer on death) designations on brokerage accounts, 401ks, and IRAs that will pass automatically to heirs. Likewise, real estate can be designated to a beneficiary or beneficiaries by executing a life estate deed.
A living will provides advance directives as to healthcare matters should the person become incapacitated. The living will determines how the individual wishes to be cared for and, for example, whether he or she wishes to not be subject to life-sustaining systems should he or she be declared terminally ill.
Another instrument to be considered is a durable limited power of attorney, which allows a family member or another designated party the right to make financial and property decisions for you, whether or not you are disabled or incapacitated. It also permits you to make those decisions if you are able.
Francis E. Sweeney, Jr., Esq., and his associates are well-versed in probate and related legal procedures. If you would like further information about our legal services or wish to book a legal consultation, drop by our office or contact our staff. One of our representatives will get back to you as soon as possible.