If you’re like most Americans, the concept of probate might never cross your mind until a family member’s death brings it to your attention. If you don’t want to find yourself entangled in months of probate litigation unexpectedly, prepare yourself with the facts now.
What Is Probate?
Probate is a complex component of the Florida court system that serves the purpose of handling a person’s will and estate after his death. In general, tampa probate attorneys are responsible for identifying and distributing a person’s assets, either by the terms set out in their will and estate planning documents or – if a person did not leave a will or estate plan – through the rules of intestate succession.
If your loved one did leave a valid will and elected an executor of that will, probate will evaluate a list of his properties, debts, and inheritances. Once everything is approved, relatives and creditors are officially notified of the death and can act accordingly. Based on the complexity of a person’s will and the amount of his or her debts and possessions, this process might take months or even years.
How Might You Find Yourself In Probate Litigation?
Probate litigation occurs when the circumstances surrounding a deceased individual’s probate procedures are called into question. For example, if your loved one’s last wishes are prevented by another person, you can hire a criminal defense attorney Tampa to reverse the problem.
A common source of probate litigation involves family members contesting the will of a deceased family member. This happens when somebody claims that the last will and testament of the decedent is suspected to be invalid, fraudulent, or signed under duress. For example, it might be revealed that an elderly parent left everything in her will to her housekeeper rather than her children. The children might suspect that mental incapacity, undue influence, or fraud were responsible for this strange outcome and challenge the will’s validity accordingly.
If any situation arises after a family member’s death or a property issue like a Tampa sinkhole attorney claim that causes you to question the probate’s handling of the estate, contact a probate litigation attorney to learn your rights.