Clients are often unpleasantly surprised to learn that having a Last Will and Testament does not negate the need for probate. And they are sometimes annoyed when they learn that even though they are named as the Executor in a Will, that alone does not give them authority to access the decedent’s assets. Yet both of these statements are true.
What Is Probate?
Probate is the judicial process whereby a will is “proved” in a court of law and accepted as a valid public document that is the true last testament of the deceased, or whereby the estate is settled according to the laws of intestacy in the state of residence of the deceased at time of death in the absence of a legal will.
Essentially, Probate is the legal process in which an estate’s assets are distributed and any remaining debts are paid off. We assist our clients at all stages of probate and estate administration. If you are the executor (a person appointed by a will to act on behalf of the estate), handling a will for someone who has passed away, we can guide you through the process of admitting the will to probate.
If the person dies without a will (intestate), we determine the proper heirs according to the applicable Connecticut laws. We also assist with the rest of the probate process, including identifying and valuing the assets, determining how the assets will be distributed, and filing the necessary Estate Tax Returns. It is also important to note that simply having a will, does not mean that you will avoid probate court.
If the estate is large, there may be federal or Connecticut death taxes due. We will prepare the necessary estate tax forms and calculate the estate taxes owed. The lawyers at Reed Wilson Case understand the intricacies of probate law and are experienced with helping people through the long and confusing process.
We Represent Clients at All of the Probate Courts in Connecticut
Locations including Saybrook, which covers the towns of Old Saybrook, Essex, Chester, Deep River, Clinton, Westbrook, Killingworth, and Haddam; Middletown, which covers Middletown, Durham, and Middlefield; Guilford-Madison, which covers Guilford and Madison, Branford-North Branford, which covers Branford, North Branford and Northford, and East Haven-North Haven, which covers East Haven and North Haven.