Estate planning is a necessity in today’s world. Without a proper estate plan, you very well may wind up in probate court. In California, that means a minimum of eight months from start to finish.
Probate Court legal costs and fees are quite expensive. For example, legal fees for an estate valued at $500,000 (which essentially means home or even condo ownership) will be $13,000. This exact same fee is also awarded to the executor/administrator of the estate, bringing the grand total of fees up to $26,000, excluding costs of approximately $1,200, and excluding any uncommon costs which somewhat often arise in probate proceedings.
The attorney and executor/administrator fees of a $1,000,000 estate would be $23,000 times two, for a grand total of $46,000, plus the above listed costs, and excluding uncommon costs.
How do you stay out of probate? Get a Living Trust or similar.
But do so with a competent attorney who knows how to make the Trust effective to keep you out probate court. If a Trust is not handled properly, you may very well still wind up in probate court.
Very regretfully, “Death Breeds Greed”. All too often, families are torn apart by arguing over assets and money. This can happen whether a person dies with a Will, or a Trust. We have been handling such court disputes for over 25 years, and know the laws applicable to such disputes, and more importantly, what it takes to prevail for our clients. These disputes can indeed become expensive, and are almost always driven by greed and/or ego.
We excel at:
- Will and Trust Contests
- Pretermitted (omitted or forgotten) Heirs
- Missing Heirs and Beneficiaries
- Disputes Over Interpretation of a Will or Trust
- Estate Theft
- Improper Usage of Estate Assets
- The Executor/Administrator or Trustee Not Following Mandates of the Will or Trust
- The Executor/Administrator or Trustee Not Properly Distributing Estate Assets
- Improperly prepared Wills or Trusts
- Amending/Changing a Will or Trust
- Review of and Finding, and Fixing As Needed, Mistakes in a Will or Trust