3 Tips for Debtors for Probate

After a person’s passage, dealing with some of the debt they leave behind can be fairly daunting. There’s a lot to pay attention to, often with strict legal timeframes and regulations that you’re normally unaware of. Here’s what you need to know about it:

Exterior of judicial building.

Compiling and Categorizing the Various Debts

Before the probate process begins, it’s best to compile a list of all of the liabilities left behind by the decedent. You should have a detailed record of lines of credit, property, federal and state taxes. Any loans they’ve taken, overdue bills, any insurance policies and mortgage that they may have left behind.

Experts recommend categorizing liabilities into two sections, as administrative expenses to pay before probate and the final bills that you can pay off after the probate is opened.

Administrative Expenses

Administrative expenses are those expenses that need to be kept current until the estate closes. These include mortgage, property taxes and utility bills for the property. For the decedent, you can consider any loans, bills for credit cards, cell phones and income taxes. These shouldn’t be paid out of pocket, and will fall upon the estate executor to take care of during the settlement procedure.

Beneficiaries will have to decide if they want to keep assets with the loan against them, having to pay the debt or if they have to be made from the estate.

Bills and Mortgages During Probate

Once the probate is open, it’s the estate executor’s responsibility for taking care of the decedent’s bills. At this point, creditors may step forward as well, which need to be verified and validated by the executor and dealt with accordingly. The executor also has to decide if and what assets need to be sold off to pay for any of the decedent’s expenses and bills.

 

Portrait of weighing scale.

The beneficiaries will also get reimbursements if they paid any of the decedent’s bills before the probate estate was opened. There are certain exceptions to this, notably those beneficiaries that receive real estate from the deceased.

The probate procedure can be fairly overwhelming with all the paperwork and consideration involved. It’s best to have a probate lawyer to assist you in the dealings. At Ledwidge and Associates, we’re experienced in probate law, helping out families and estates deal with the issues of probate law, allowing them to move on amicably. Reach out to the business today if you seek a probate law or litigation lawyer.

 

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