Estate planning is the process of creating legal documents that represent your wishes after your death. This can include creating a trust or will. These documents are designed to provide detailed information concerning what you want to be done with your financial assets and property and who will be responsible for ensuring these wishes are fulfilled. Estate plans make it clear to your beneficiaries how to handle any remaining debts, secure properties, and divide finances. Upon death, a succession case will need to be heard in a Louisiana court.
The term “succession” means the transmission of the estate of a deceased person to his or her heirs. In other states, the process is called “probate.” A succession involves the gathering of documents to show the assets and liabilities of the estate. The process is filed with the court and is very public. This process is designed to acknowledge the validity of the estate planning documents and ensure that the wishes of the deceased are honored.
Since her admittance to the Louisiana State Bar in 2017, our attorney, Deanna C. Johnson, has been providing exceptional counseling and representation for individuals seeking aid in estate planning, family law, and personal injury. Magnolia Law is a client-centered firm dedicated to delivering fierce and detailed representation in court. We know that many court cases can be emotionally charged, which is why we are there to handle the details and legality of the case. We are committed to our clients while demonstrating compassion and support. Losing a loved one can be difficult and emotional. Let us take care of the legal side, ensuring that the succession process in Baton Rouge, LA runs smoothly.
Succession, also referred to as probate in other states, is the legal process of validating estate planning documents and transferring property ownership from the deceased to their beneficiaries. There are a few different options for the succession process. You can choose to have the court system handle it, which is referred to as unadministered succession. This form of succession does not require an executor, as the court will have the ultimate say according to estate planning documents or state law.
Administered succession can be more complex. In this type of succession, the court will appoint a representative who is responsible for resolving any issues and administering the estate once any possible issues are resolved. Louisiana also has the option to do a succession through independent administration, which essentially means that the executor/executrix can act with less court supervision. Succession can be conducted through independent administration if it is provided for in the will or if all of the heirs agree in writing to do an independent administration. Independent administration significantly reduces the time and cost of doing a succession.
Regardless of what route you take, the gathering of evidence is vital to ensuring that all requirements are met and that everyone impacted by the results has been properly notified. The counsel of an experienced attorney can help you determine what type of support you need as well as what you should expect from the succession process.
Succession isn’t always required, and whether you must go through this process depends on the value of the estate. However, it is beneficial to turn to an estate planning attorney to determine if your case is likely to go to probate. If it is, your attorney can help gather the information needed to ensure that the process runs as smoothly as possible. Although it is rare, there is the possibility of complex issues arising with certain beneficiaries.
It is not easy to be the executor of an estate. There are often a lot of emotions involved after the passing of a loved one. An attorney can focus on the legality of the situation, allowing family and friends to take the time to grieve and gather their thoughts.
It is not uncommon to have beneficiaries dispute the value of assets or the validity of the will. This can prolong the succession process and result in additional court hearings. While you may not need an attorney, they can ensure that the right steps are taken. Succession can be complex when dealing with issues involving assets, debts, and beneficiaries. With a skilled attorney, this process can be streamlined.
Hiring an attorney is vital when you are dealing with a sizable or complex estate. If there is a lot of property or financial gain for the beneficiaries, an attorney can help mediate the situation and ensure that the assets and funds are distributed properly.
The cost associated with succession can vary depending on whether it is administered or unadministered. If it is a simple succession, the cost could range from $300-$600. However, if the case is more complex, such as an administered succession, it could cost $1,500-$3,000. Consulting with an attorney can help you get a better estimate of the total cost of your situation.
In Louisiana, a lawyer is not a legal requirement. However, an attorney has a wealth of knowledge and experience that you may need. There are many complicated aspects of succession, including:
This is not an easy task, especially while going through the grieving process. A lawyer can handle the majority of these tasks, allowing you to focus on the moment.
While there is no legal requirement for hiring an attorney for a succession, many families choose to do so. Hiring an attorney is the ideal way to ensure that the process runs smoothly. A skilled attorney can ensure that all necessary paperwork is available and that all deadlines are met.
Most cases can be resolved within six months to a year. This timeframe can vary due to extenuating circumstances, such as a beneficiary questioning the validity of the will or trust. In complex situations, it could take years to resolve the case. Hiring a professional attorney can help reduce the amount of time spent in the courtroom.
Wills in Louisiana need to go through probate to be deemed properly valid. However, if the estate is worth less than $125,000, it may qualify for an affidavit. A will provides greater control for an executor versus an estate that may solely rely on the decision of the court.
At Magnolia Law, we understand that families are still grieving during the process of succession. Our job is to assist your family in order to make these judicial proceedings occur as quickly and smoothly as possible without adding extra stress. We can work with you to ensure that all necessary information is gathered and that the courts have all the documentation they need to ensure a smooth process. Contact Baton Rouge succession Lawyer, Deanna C. Johnson, to discuss how to handle probate with your loved one’s estate.