Jimerson Law Firm, P.C.

What Is Probate? When Does This Typically Occur?

Probate is the process of clearing title to your assets and paying the debts you left behind. It is left for the court to decide what is going to happen. Probate only has jurisdiction when a person is dead or incapacitated. The court is then left to determine who is going to be in charge and who is going to receive your assets.

What Goes Into Probate?

Real estate is one of the major things that get looked at in probate court. You see a lot of real estate sales taking place because someone died. You shouldn’t have to have your real estate sold because of a probate matter, but it happens. Real estate is something that needs to be cleared because it is a title instrument.

When you die, your bank account is automatically shut down by the bank. How are you going to pay for funeral expenses? If the bank shuts down your bank account, probate court is the way to get those things cleared up. However, it is the worst way of dealing with all the things that should have been done earlier using the right tools, like a living trust.

What Are Ways To Avoid Probate?

The best way to avoid probate is to have a pour over will that pours into a living trust. People fear the cost of doing so. However, it is literally pennies on the dollar compared to what you may lose in probate court after taxes, attorney’s fees, administration fees, and expenses that you never thought about. It is really nonsensical not to have an estate plan that benefits you without spending all your money in probate court.

There are some minor options Missouri offers to avoid probate court. Missouri has what are called beneficiary deeds, which act like an insurance policy during the life of a person. It goes directly to the beneficiary. You can also do that with a motor vehicle in Missouri; you can go to the director of motor vehicles and ask them to make a beneficiary of the vehicle. You can go to your bank and have your bank to do what is called a transfer on that assignment of your bank account and keep your bank accounts open for that person to use for the benefit of that.

I would always say that your best bet is to use the full trust documents as opposed to these minor options that cover only one specific thing. Most of us have more than one thing to cover. However, there are tools that you can use without spending so much money on expensive estate plans.

For more information on Probate Process In The State Of Missouri, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (314) 786-3536 today.

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