What’s the Big Deal About Avoiding Probate?
These days, it seems like everyone is scrambling to avoid probate, and wills are
being replaced with trusts and other probate-avoiding tools. So, what’s the big
deal about avoiding probate?
1. Avoiding Probate Can Save Money. Probating a will means going to court.
The probate process, by definition, is the court-administered procedure for
transferring your assets to the appropriate heirs and beneficiaries once
you’ve passed away. And, going to court generally means court costs and
attorney’s fees. Depending on the size and complexity of your estate – and
how well your family gets along – the cost of probate can range from
moderate to very expensive.
Planning your estate with a revocable living trust or other tools that avoid
probate is not necessarily cheap, but in many cases, going this route can
save you significant amounts of money.
2. Avoiding Probate Can Save Time. When your estate goes through the
probate process, assets can be tied up and inaccessible to your loved ones
for months or even longer. The exact length of the process depends on the
circumstances of each individual estate, but the larger or more complex the
estate, or the more controversy surrounding the probate process, the
longer the process is likely to take.
Estate planning methods, like a revocable living trust, can help your assets
transition smoothly and relatively quickly to your loved ones, without the
red tape involved in the probate process.
3. Avoiding Probate Protects Your Privacy. During Probate, because the
process is a court-administered one, the details of your estate become a
matter of public record. So, creditors, co-workers, or distant relatives can
access the court records to find out the details contained in your will.
Often, people prefer to keep these details private and privacy cannot be
achieved if the estate goes through probate.
By avoiding the probate process, your private affairs don’t have to be made
public. For instance, in most circumstances, there’s no requirement for a
trust to be filed in court. So, the contents of a trust remain private, with
only those directly involved in the administration of the trust gaining access
to its contents.
To find out what estate planning tools are most effective for you and your
family, you can consult with an estate planning attorney.
Experienced estate planning attorneys Greensboro NC of the Law Offices of
Cheryl David offers estate planning and business planning resources to residents
of Greensboro NC. To learn more about these free resources, please visit