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Probate Lawyers in Chester County, PA, Assisting Families Through the Complex Probate Process

If your family is beginning the probate process, you may feel confused and need clarification about how to get started. Probate will most likely begin immediately, depending on the circumstances of the deceased’s estate. For this reason, you will need an experienced probate lawyer who can review the terms of the will and assist with probate administration and litigation if necessary.

Peak Legal Group of Chester Co, PA, is a law firm dedicated to assisting families in obtaining the assets they need after their loved one dies. However, issues often arise, such as creditor claims that may complicate the probate process, making it difficult for beneficiaries and other heirs to obtain their inheritance.

Contact Peak Legal Group to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your case and explore your legal options.

What is Probate in Pennsylvania?

Probate in Pennsylvania is a legal process that administers the estates of those who have passed away. Probate law stipulates that an Administrator or Executor will oversee the estate’s affairs and distribute assets to the rightful beneficiaries.

Before the Executor or Administrator can disburse the estate’s assets, specific legal requirements must be met. One critical aspect of administrative proceedings is the Executor’s duty to manage the estate assets properly. For example, the Executor ensures all creditor’s expenses and debts are settled before distributing assets. In addition, all final income taxes must be paid.

Suppose you have been appointed to handle Estate administration. In that case, you must consult with a knowledgeable attorney who can provide the legal advice you need to ensure that no legal issues arise that could cause individuals to petition the court to contest the will or file lawsuits.

Does Having a Will Help a Family Avoid Probate?

The assets would be distributed according to their final wishes if the decedent left a last will and testament. However, if the decedent did not leave a will, the assets left in the estate will be distributed according to Pennsylvania intestacy laws.

Pennsylvania intestacy laws state that if an individual dies without leaving a will, their assets and other funds will be disbursed to their closest relatives, starting with the surviving spouse.

If you have questions about Pennsylvania intestacy laws, contact Peak Legal Group and ask to schedule a meeting with an experienced probate attorney.

Is There Any Way to Avoid Probate

Many individuals mistakenly believe that all decedent’s estates must go through probate before assets can be distributed. However, Pennsylvania law dictates that only estates worth $50,000 or more must go through probate. Therefore, a smaller estate valued at less than $50,000 may be able to avoid probate altogether. Furthermore, any real estate or land is excluded from the $50,000 designation.

Additionally, all real property that has a joint owner will be subject to joint tenancy or tenancy by entirety. This means that upon the death of one owner, the property will automatically be transferred to the joint owner and avoid probate.

There are also several legal methods that a testator, the person who creates a will, can use to help their family avoid probate. For example, simply having beneficiary designations, bank accounts, and life insurance policies can help families have much-needed financial resources.

Some individuals also choose to transfer assets into a living trust which helps to avoid probate and prevent families from paying estate taxes. Many individuals who own businesses also choose to place their assets in an irrevocable trust to protect them from creditors.

What Type of Results Can I Expect From Peak Legal Group?

Peak Legal Group of Chester County is a law firm passionately committed to helping families through probate. Our well-qualified probate attorneys can assist you in paying all bills and financial obligations the estate may owe, such as inheritance taxes. We can also help prepare and file all documents the probate court requires.

Our law firm can also work to resolve issues that may occur with the will involving guardianship of minor children, opening a bank account to manage the estate’s finances, property appraisals, and identifying and securing assets.

If one of the beneficiaries chooses to contest the will, we are fully prepared to provide skilled legal representation to help the matter be resolved on time.

We are proud of our service to Chester County residents and will gladly provide you with more information on how we can help ease the strain often involved with probate. Contact our law offices by calling 610-989-7064 and ask to schedule a free no-obligation consultation to discuss your case.