After a loved one or friend passes away, the situation can become very confusing. All too often, well-meaning individuals try to take control of the situation without proper legal authority to do so and without knowing exactly what to do. This can be like fumbling around in a dark room.
Attorney Brady can give you some “light” during this difficult time. Probate administration is a common feature of the law. There is a large body of laws that need to be followed. Court Rules dictate what needs to occur. All too often, conflicting personalities are involved. There are often harsh feelings between family members. This makes the situation even more desperate.
It is important that the property and affairs of your deceased relative or friend not be administered in a haphazard or illegal way. Competent legal representation is the key.
There are various options when filing a decedent’s estate in the Probate Court. The decedent’s Last Will and Testament is not effective, except to enable anatomical gifts, until it has been formally admitted to the Probate Court. This requires petitioning the Court to open an estate, appoint a Personal Representative, and perhaps to take protective actions to preserve the property of the estate.
If a person did not leave a Last Will and Testament, Michigan law prescribes a method for determining who gets the property. This is called the “Law of Intestate Succession,” but even before the property is distributed by this statute or by a Will, the estate must be properly probated.
The probating of an estate often involves appraisals, selling of property, inventory, income tax returns, and other aspects. This is not the “momentous mountain” that it may appear to be when you read this. It is simply something that you need to think about.