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How Do I Know If I Should Hire a Long Island Probate Lawyer?

How Do I Know If I Should Hire a Long Island Probate Lawyer?

With any matters of your estate it is highly encouraged to utilize the experience and skill of probate and estate planning lawyers who can guide you through the somewhat complicating process. When addressing the topic of probate, you will want to access your personal situation for yourself, and determine whether or not hiring a probate attorney is the best choice. Here are a few helpful factors to consider when making this decision. If you find that you fall into any of these mentioned categories, consider contacting a Long Island probate lawyer at The Law Office of Michael J. Brescia, P.C. for a free initial consultation to discuss your unique case.

As an executor (the person designated to carry out another's estate plan) you will first want to determine if the deceased person's assets are transferable without using probate. In most cases, this will be decided based upon how the deceased person planned ahead for probate and how much they worked on "probate-avoidance." In an ideal world, the executor would be able to transfer out all their assets without having to use probate, though this may not always be the case.

Another important factor that will play a role in this decision is simply whether or not the family members of the deceased are getting along with each other or there is an uproar in disagreements. Sadly, when families pursue probate lawsuits it can make for a lot of broken hearts, thus contacting a probate lawyer is essential to help you avoid the disputes from going before the court.

The type of assets that the deceased has also will influence whether probate will occur or not. For example, if they only left behind simple assets such as their house, vehicles or bank accounts (also called common assets), then you may be able to go about the process alone, though this still may be difficult. However, contacting a probate lawyer is without question if you are dealing with assets such as businesses or commercial real estate of some sort. Even assets that require some form of continual upkeep and handling are considered as more complicating and therefore the use of a legal professional is highly encouraged.

Paying of the deceased debts can be something that will require the use of a probate lawyer as well, especially in the event that you learn their assets are insufficient for the amount of debt they owe. If this is the case, state laws will often regulate priority for certain creditors that will need to receive repayment before others. It is also possible that you will owe state and federal taxes on the estate and the deceased current value of assets is unable to make the payments. Fortunately, this is an extremely rare occurrence and almost 98% of estates do not have to pay federal taxes, though if you find this is the case you will want to hire an attorney.

The list of possibilities goes on, which is why contacting a Long Island estate planning lawyer at our firm is beneficial to you—because we offer a free case evaluation! Don't hesitate in calling our office today for any questions you may have and to schedule your first appointment. Our legal team will do whatever we can to help you determine the best course of action for your unique circumstances. No executor should be left in the cold when dealing with another's estate, whether you are family or not. Take advantage of our years of experience and give us a call at your earliest convenience!


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