When a family member passes away, loved ones hold the task of settling his or her estate. This means locating assets, determining their value, paying off remaining debts and more. This is probate, and it may be helpful for a Tennessee family to understand what to expect when they are obligated to navigate this court-supervised process after the death of a family member.
What will happen next?
Sometimes, a will may name a specific person to act as the executor of an estate. This individual will have specific responsibilities during the probate process, starting with filing the appropriate paperwork in order to initiate probate. After this, the following things will happen:
- The executor will locate all assets associated with the estate.
- The estate will pay outstanding taxes and debts.
- The executor will oversee the process of settling remaining disputes associated with the estate.
After meeting these requirements, the executor will then oversee the process of distributing the remaining assets to beneficiaries as outlined in the decedent’s will. It can take months to complete probate, or in situations where there are disputes over a will, years.
It can be helpful to have guidance when navigating probate. A Tennessee family may benefit from having an experienced ally provide counsel regarding the protection of their interests as they work through important steps and seek to honor the wishes of their loved one. This will also reduce the chance of complications that may lengthen the probate process and lead to additional stress and costs.