Probate Lawyer Serving Madison Heights, MI

Probate Lawyer Serving Madison Heights, MI

Probate Attorney Madison Heights, MI

Death is a difficult concept to consider. No one wants to think about what the world will be like when they are gone or when they lose one of their loved ones. Unfortunately, it is also inevitable. And when that day comes around, it is better to have planned for it than to have ignored it.

The easiest way to plan for that hopefully far-off day is to plan your estate. That way, when those who survive you must handle the process of administering your estate, it is easy. 

But what is going to happen when that day arrives, and how can you make the process easier? An estate administration attorney at Bingham Legal Group will help you understand the probate process and how you can prepare for it. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.

The Probate Process in Michigan

When someone dies in Michigan, the state requires their estate to undergo probate. This process is how the state ensures that the wishes of the deceased are respected after their death. Like most government processes, it is long and tedious.

The process begins by determining whether the deceased has a will. If the deceased doesn’t have a will, then Michigan intestacy laws determine how the estate is distributed. These laws don’t care about how good a relationship the deceased had with potential heirs or what they might have wished to do with their assets. It just awards shares based on a specific ordering of a spouse (if applicable) and blood relatives.

If the deceased has a will, the state will try to determine whether it is valid. This is usually reasonably simple unless someone contests the validity of the will. It can be contested for a reason like the deceased not being of sound mind when the will was written.

The next step, regardless of whether there is a will or not, is that the probate court assigns an executor. If the deceased has a will, the court will typically appoint the executor stated in the will. Otherwise, the court must choose a person it believes will appropriately administer the estate.

Administering an estate often takes months to years. The executor needs to determine where all of the assets of the deceased are, what debts the deceased owes, and the contact information for all heirs. Debts need to be paid before assets are distributed.

How long this part of the process takes depends on the estate size and how well the deceased maintained records. This usually takes significantly longer when the deceased doesn’t have a will because they likely don’t have good records.

Finally, once all of that is handled, the executor will distribute the funds and property in the estate. However, before this happens, individuals may challenge the will to get more from it or to prevent others from benefiting from it.

This entire process involves a lot of paperwork and bureaucracy. Typically, if the executor isn’t a probate attorney, they will get experienced representation from Madison Heights trust & estate lawyers to assist with the process.

Attorneys from Bingham Legal Group have decades of experience handling the probate process. We know how to make it go smoothly and quickly. Dealing with a probate court isn’t intimidating for our attorneys.

Simplifying the Probate Process With Estate Planning

The probate process is likely to take as long as a year, but it doesn’t have to. There is a simple way to make all of this much less painful — proper estate planning can bring efficiency to the process.

Who should look into estate planning? Honestly, everyone should. If you are starting in life after just graduating from college, that is the perfect time to set up your estate. Alternatively, if you have a relative who is retiring and never set up a will, you should encourage them to do estate planning with Bingham Legal Group.

It is never harmful to start planning your estate early. But if you wait too long, eventually you will run out of time.

Estate planning doesn’t just simplify the probate process. It can also potentially prevent problems and reduce taxes. The latter is particularly important if you want your assets to protect your heirs.

You can potentially help your heirs avoid taxes by setting up a trust. Several types of trusts may work, depending on your circumstances and how you are trying to help your loved ones. Our estate planning lawyers will help you determine which type of trust is optimal for your needs.

Furthermore, planning your estate can help prevent estate & trust litigation. When we help you plan your estate, we look closely at your assets and property to determine whether anyone else might have claims on them. If another person has some type of claim, we will work with them to determine what happens to those assets when you pass on.

Finally, when Bingham Legal Group assists you with estate planning, your estate becomes as ironclad as possible. We carefully document your assets and property, arrange for your debts to be paid promptly, pre-calculate taxes as much as possible, and offer testimony if necessary to validate your will.

This is a valuable resource if you want to protect your loved ones or if another family member wants to protect you after they pass.

How Bingham Legal Group Can Help an Executor

Can Bingham Legal Group help if you are appointed as an executor of a will in Madison Heights? Yes, we can.

If you have been named as an executor in a will, we can start helping you as soon as the will is written. Even though your executor duties haven’t started yet, we can help you maintain important records and give you resources to call on when that duty begins.

Our most important assistance, though, comes after your duties as executor have begun. We will guide you through the probate process to make it as short and painless as possible. This is particularly important if you were assigned as an executor for someone who died intestate.

The main benefit we offer is filing documents and dealing with the probate court. Our attorneys all have years of experience with probate law and know how the court process goes. We will handle the red tape and make sure you have all the documentation you need so you spend as little time as possible in front of a probate judge.

Our lawyers can also assist you with paying off debt, determining taxes, and finding heirs. Even if you understand the process, having experienced attorneys providing extra help will speed the process up by months or even by years.

If you want to assist the executor of your will, you can even hire our law firm to assist when you plan your estate.

Contact the Madison Heights Probate Lawyers at Bingham Legal Group

The probate process is like every government process — slow and filled with red tape. The probate attorneys at Bingham Legal Group can make that process proceed much more quickly. If you need any type of help with a probate process in Madison Heights, regardless of whether you are an heir or executor, contact our law firm immediately to schedule a free consultation.

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