Baton Rouge Probate Lawyer

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Baton Rouge Probate Attorney

The probate process is how the state inventories a deceased person’s estate, pays the estate debts, and distributes the assets to their heirs or beneficiaries. Probate is a long process, and it can be incredibly hard for those who have just lost a loved one. When you have a Baton Rouge probate lawyer by your side to help guide you through the process, it can be easier to manage and require less time in court.

In order to have a successful probate process, it’s important that you have a compassionate attorney who is skilled in probate and succession law.

Experienced Probate Law Attorneys

Succession is the process of distributing property after someone’s death, which can be a very emotionally challenging process. When our clients need help with succession or probating a will, our firm supports them. We understand that at this emotional time, clients need someone to talk with them and help them through this difficult time.

At the Shelby Law Firm, we understand these needs and provide legal help in a caring and compassionate manner. Knowing that our clients have recently lost loved ones, we make every effort to move efficiently through the process and conclude succession. We work with our clients throughout succession, helping it go as smoothly as possible.

Probate in Baton Rouge

The first step in probate is to review the decedent’s will if there is one, and determine its validity. If the deceased has a comprehensive estate plan, those documents will also be reviewed. If a comprehensive estate plan is found to be valid, the rest of the process may continue outside of court. If there is only a valid will, the estate will be distributed in probate according to the stipulations in the will. If there is no valid will, the estate is distributed according to intestate succession laws.

How Do I Avoid Probate in Louisiana?

The ideal way to avoid probate is by ensuring your assets pass to their beneficiaries without state or probate court interference. This may be done through beneficiary designations on accounts, pay-on-death or transfer-on-death designations, or through jointly owned accounts. The most effective way to keep many assets out of probate is through the use of a trust.

By creating a revocable trust, you have complete control over the assets during your lifetime and the ability to change beneficiaries. The assets in a trust pass from your ownership to the ownership of the trustee after you pass, preventing them from falling under state jurisdiction.

Do I Need a Probate Attorney?

A probate attorney can be incredibly beneficial for heirs and executors alike. Not all estates need to go through probate due to their value and other qualifications, and your attorney can help determine if the standard formal probate process is required. A probate attorney can help an executor with the process of administering the estate according to the deceased’s wishes. A probate attorney can help heirs if they believe the will being used is invalid and wish to contest it, but they can also help an executor defend against will contests.

Some estates are more complex than others. When an estate is more complex yet does not have comprehensive estate planning, it can become an incredibly complicated situation. An attorney is often a necessary ally when navigating a lengthy probate process.

What Is the Difference Between Probate and Succession in Louisiana?

Probate and succession refer to the same process, but succession is the term used in the state of Louisiana. Because of this, both probate and succession are used interchangeably within the state and in any documentation.

What Can Lengthen the Process of Probate?

Probation is already a long and expensive process. Any legal or administrative errors or disputes can create additional delays that make the process even longer. Common reasons for a longer probate process may include:

  • Will contests or trust contests
  • Confirming a court-appointed personal representative
  • Whether or not there is a will
  • If the assets in the estate are well-organized
  • The estate’s value and the complexity of the assets in the estate
  • Any other disputes between family members and beneficiaries

The process of probate can take several months and up to as long as several years.

Contact Estate Litigation Attorneys

From estate planning to succession to litigation, we offer our clients practical, solid legal advice and representation, and we are dedicated to providing exceptional customer service. With an office in Baton Rouge, our estate litigation attorneys serve clients much of southern Louisana. If you are looking for a lawyer who is experienced with handling the complex needs involved with a succession, contact us to schedule an appointment or call at 225-223-6961.

Contact Us Today

Call Shelby Law Firm at 225-223-6961 or use our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.