If your late loved one’s estate needs to go through the probate process, a myriad of steps will need to be completed prior to distributing their assets. The personal representative must first open the estate, which entails submitting the original copy of the will, if there is one, to the probate court. Certain forms must be filled out, and if anyone wishes to contest the will, this is when they would do so.
If the will is declared valid, and the correct paperwork is filed with the court, the personal representative must then collect the estate’s assets. They must inventory everything that will pass through probate, and certain items may require a professional appraiser to determine the value of said objects.
The San Jose probate lawyers at the Henshaw & Henry, PC, have the ability to help clients administer a loved one’s estate. Please call the firm to learn how we may be able to help you and your family through this tough time.
Once the estate has been inventoried, the personal representative must pay necessary taxes and debts. In order for them to pay the deceased’s taxes, they must notify the IRS of their appointment, and apply for a separate taxpayer ID number for the estate. Paying income taxes may also be necessary, and the final income tax return is due by April 15th the year after the loved one passed away.
Taxes and debts must be paid before distributing the estate, in the event that the decedent did not leave enough money to pay said taxes and debts.
In some situations, parts of the estate may need to be sold to pay off debts and taxes. Once these steps are completed, the estate can be closed, and the assets and property may be distributed. If a person did not leave a will, the personal representative must distribute the estate according to California State Law.
Depending on the decedent’s estate, a personal representative may or may not need assistance with the administration process. If you have been named a personal representative, and you find that you need help, please contact my firm.
We have walked many clients through the estate administration process, including filing the necessary forms and paperwork with the probate court. We may also help individuals who wish to prepare their estate for the probate process by creating an estate plan. ¡Hablamos español!