When it comes to probate, it’s important to have an attorney who is well-versed inside the courtroom, who has experience with judges and knows how to represent your interests. It’s hard enough when a loved one passes away, but to cope with such a tragedy and also deal with the nightmare of probate – without the right legal counsel – can be daunting.
When someone dies without a trust, their assets must go through a court process known as probate. Unfortunately, probate is a time-consuming process that can last for years. It is also very expensive and can put loved ones at a huge financial loss.
The costs of probate are set by law and depend on the fair market value of each asset (as opposed to the equity the decedent had in the asset). For example, the Probate Code sets forth as follows:
- 4% of the first $100,000 of the gross estate value;
- 3% of the next $100,000 of the gross estate value;
- 2% of the next $800,000 of the gross estate value;
- 1% of the next $9,000,000 of the gross estate value;
- ½% of the next $15,000,000 of the gross estate value
On top of these fees are what are also referred to as “extraordinary fees,” and can constitute items like sales of real property, disputes of wills, or handling tax issues related to the estate.
Probate can be an intimidating process and involves arduous tasks such as:
- Issuing letters of administration;
- Conducting an inventory and appraisal of the decedent’s assets;
- Filing tax returns on behalf of the estate;
- Contacting the decedent’s creditors;
- Publishing legal notices;
- Selling real property;
- Distributingassets while limiting taxes
As the executor or administrator of an estate, you will need guidance from a knowledgeable legal guide to help avoid pitfalls along the way. Call for a free initial consultation with Kundani & Chang today to get started with the probate process.