Knowledgeable Guidance For Probate And Estate Administration
There are a number of legal steps to take during estate administration and probate. Depending on the estate of the deceased, it can be a relatively straightforward process or quite complex. Johnson & Johnson, Attorneys At Law, has handled many high-asset estates here in Florham Park, Morris County and the surrounding communities, but the firm handles clients of more modest means as well.
It is also important to note that John M. Johnson and the entire firm understand that family members and friends are often coping with an immense sense of loss during this time. Unfortunately, there may also be legal and financial issues in estate law that are beyond the abilities of the loved ones involved. The staff will walk you through this process, providing knowledgeable guidance that best serves your needs. More than that, this family firm treats everyone like family, sometimes even helping with the important little things that the deceased had always handled.
What Is Probate?
Probate is a legal process held under the supervision of the court that occurs after the death of an individual regardless of whether or not they have a valid will. If there is a valid will, assets are distributed accordingly. If there was no valid will, the state’s probate laws dictate how to distribute the assets. Once the process begins, the court will appoint a personal representative who can administer the estate if one has not been chosen or available. An estate lawyer can also help family members resolve legal and financial concerns at the negotiating table or before a judge. Other services we provide include:
- Assemble all the decedent’s assets
- Pay any outstanding debts the estate owes, including funeral expenses, taxes and administration costs
- Appropriately distribute all assets left over
The Details Of Estate Administration
The estate administrator must fulfill a number of legal obligations that include but are not limited to probate. In New Jersey, the process can be expedited if the estate does not exceed $20,000 in value. Estate administration also addresses those assets that do not go through probate. These include the following:
- Property in a revocable trust
- Real estate owned as joint tenants with right of survivorship, such as a spouse
- Retirement accounts and life insurance policies
- Bank accounts with transfer on death or payable on death clauses
The administrator also is in charge of locating beneficiaries, identifying all the estates assets and paying creditors. We can help with or oversee this entire process for beneficiaries and administrators, also assisting as legal issues like contesting a will arise. We can help you effectively and quickly resolve these and other issues.