If you have recently lost a loved one, you’ve no doubt heard the word “probate” used in relation to your loved one’s estate. Probate can refer to the court process of validating a will so a personal representative (i.e., Arizona’s term for executor) can implement the decedent’s wishes, or the oversight the court provides for a personal representative who settles an intestate estate. Whether a will exists or not, the process of settling an estate can be complex, so the person who assumes those duties needs the advice of a knowledgeable probate lawyer. I have extensive experience advising clients who act as personal representatives. Personal representatives need sound guidance, since the law holds them personally liable for losses in the value of estate assets due to errors or misconduct. I can guide you through this complex process quickly and efficiently, so you maximize the value of the estate for your loved one’s heirs.
I advise, guide, and represent clients in all stages of the probate and estate administration process. Many of our estate planning clients also turn to us to assist them when a family member passes away.
I can handle everything, from:
In addition, I am experienced in helping clients to resolve disputes that arise in the probate context and in probate litigation. He not only has the experience to help families avoid a probate ahead of time, but he also can help them work through the many nuances of a probate case if they are forced to file a probate case.
Most personal representatives have never probated a will; many are surprised to learn the decedent’s will named them as the responsible party. When there is no will, the least-reluctant close relative usually acts as personal representative of the estate, after getting court approval. In most cases, the party responsible for settling the estate has no prior experience with tasks that include:
Personal representatives can easily make mistakes due to inexperience, stress, and hasty decisions. I guide clients through every step of the probate process, with reliable, detailed advice, so you can settle your loved one’s estate as efficiently, quickly, and easily as possible.
I assist executors with the arduous process of collecting, valuing, protecting, and liquidating the assets of the estate. When needed, I can call upon accountants, financial advisors, real estate agents, property managers, and other professionals to assist with executor duties and can access expert opinions about unique assets such as antiques, rare books, automobiles, and other collectibles for accurate valuation, management, and possible sale.
Even in apparently straightforward estate cases, there are sometimes disputes among beneficiaries or between certain beneficiaries and the personal representative. When representing the estate or the estate’s fiduciary, I demonstrate the utmost professionalism in negotiations and in the courtroom. Whether the issue is a will challenge or accusations against a fiduciary’s management of estate assets, I advocate strongly for my client’s rights.