Sacramento Probate Attorney
Need an attorney for probate administration in Central or Northern California?
Probate administration takes place at a sensitive and difficult time in people's lives. Many conflicts can arise as an estate is divided. You need a trustworthy Sacramento probate attorney to guide you through the complicated legal language that governs a will. It is best to nip any and all problems in the bud when probate administration is needed. This will eliminate problems and make the best of a trying time as a person's legacy is passed on.
The Law Offices of Jack S. Johal draws on more than 35 years of legal experience to assist their clients in a sensitive and caring manner. Attorney Johal has earned a reputation as a premier Sacramento probate lawyer due to the personalized attention that he gives to clients, as well as the weekends and off hours that he sometimes works to ensure that an estate is fairly divided according to the rule of law.
The Probate Process in California
In order to settle a decedent's estate and transfer title to those who stand to inherit, you usually have to go to court. The procedure of determining that a will is valid, paying debts and claims against an estate and distributing what's left to the beneficiaries is called probate, which is a court-supervised procedure.
In California, the court proceedings for probate are as follows:
- The person who is in possession of the will MUST deliver the original will to the probate court clerk's office within 30 days.
- The holder of the will must send a copy of the will to the executor, or if the executor cannot be found, they can send it to a beneficiary named in the will.
If the custodian of the will does not to the above, they can be sued for damages. If there is no will, the court will appoint an administrator to manage the estate during probate. The person who wishes to be the administrator must file a Petition for Letters Administration. Usually, the administrator is a close family member, spouse, or domestic partner of the deceased.
The court process for probate is as follows:
- Someone (the petitioner) starts the case in court by filing a Petition for Probate (Form DE-111).
- The probate case must be filed in the county where the deceased lived. If they lived outside of the State of California, probate will be filed in the CA county where he or she owned property.
Duties and Responsibilities of an Administrator
There are duties and responsibilities to meet if your are the Administrator or Executor during the probate process. Some common tasks that need to met for the estate during the probate process include:
- Distribute Estate Assets - Identifying, locating and valuing estate assets of the decedent. At the end of probate you will need to allocate the legal transfer of the assets to the beneficiaries or legal heirs of the estate.
- Creditors - You will need to notify creditors that you are making progress with probate and will need to review claims submitted. Verify claims and approve payments to those creditors out of estate assets.
- Facing Litigation - If someone does not acknowledge the validity of the Will submitted, you will need to defend that will through litigation.
- Taxes - Estate taxes and government taxes must be calculated, returned, and filed. All taxes owed must be paid first.
Probate Administration to Bypass Any Problems
Probate administration is governed by the complex California Probate Code, as well as the state's Welfare and Institutions Codes. You will need expert help to break down the language and reduce it to laymen's terms so that all assets are equitably distributed according to the testator's will. The Law Offices of Jack S. Johal have helped come hundreds of clients like you to patiently work through all of the ins and outs of probate administration.
Attorney Johal is AV® Rated by Martindale-Hubbell®, the top independent rating firm for attorneys nationwide, earning a ranking of preeminent. He has also been given a 10 rating from AVVO, another premier independent lawyer rating organization that awards a 10 to fewer than 7% of the lawyers in the Sacramento area. These honors are indicative of the reputation that attorney Johal has established as a skilled Sacramento probate lawyer, which is precisely the type of person that you want to complete the sometimes-arduous task of probate administration.