Probate, Trust & Estate Administration

Facilitating a More Painless Post-Death Process

Probate, trust and estate administration is the process that occurs after one has died of transferring the decedent’s assets. Probate is the court process which must be used to transfer assets if someone dies with a will or without a will. While probate could potentially be avoided or at least made much easier with a well-prepared and fully funded estate plan, the process could take years to complete.

Located in Sacramento, LifePath Law, APC, works to make probate, trust and estate administration simpler for loved ones, to ease the burden as much as possible. Our post-death administration services include:

  • Probating a will
  • Intestate administration (dying without a will)
  • Small estate administration
  • Spousal property petition
  • Succession to real property
  • Trust administration
  • Filing required notices to beneficiaries and state and federal agencies
  • Trust accounting, notices and waivers
  • Subtrust funding and administration
  • Petitioning the court for approval of trustee actions

Our attorneys work with clients through the entire process of estate planning and administration. We believe estate planning and administration is more about the journey than the destination, and we aim to lead you through that journey to protect the security of everyone involved.

Minimizing The Costs And Stress Of Probate

Through proper estate planning, our lawyers can mitigate the costs of probate or even avoid them altogether. However, if you do have to deal with probate, our goal is to minimize the worry and conflict that might result.

Poor estate administration could lead to conflict in probate court. While we do offer litigation services for those who need it, our primary objective is to help you avoid that entirely. For assistance with the California probate process or to learn more about our services, call 916-231-0688 for a complimentary phone consultation, or reach out online to get started.

What Is The Role Of A Trustee?

When your estate plan includes a trust, you name a trustee. As the trustmaker, also known as a trustor or grantor, you assign a person to be your trustee.

The trustee’s role is to carry out the intentions of the trustor or grantor by following the terms of the trust as well as the law set out by the California Probate Code.

You may name yourself as trustee while you are alive and name a successor trustee to follow the intentions of your trust when you become incapacitated or die.

At LifePath Law, APC, in Sacramento we guide our clients to also consider selecting and naming a neutral third party such as a professional fiduciary as a trustee especially if sensitive family matters could arise.

Who Becomes An Administrator?

When a person dies without a will, or intestate, the probate court will appoint an administrator of their estate. A family member or dear friend may petition the court to become the administrator who then manages the estate during the probate process.

Starting a probate case can be a complex process. Filing a petition, notice of hearing, publication in a newspaper of general circulation, gathering assets, and preparing an inventory is just the beginning of the process for an administrator.

Our experienced attorneys at LifePath Law, APC, can provide wise counsel for you if your loved one has passed and you seek to become administrator of the estate.

What Is The Difference Between Beneficiaries And Heirs

When you and your attorney create your will or your trust, you name a beneficiary or beneficiaries who will receive property or assets you clearly define in your legal document.

A beneficiary can be a person or an entity, such as a nonprofit or charitable organization, you designate to receive certain property or assets you intend them to have.

Under the California Probate Code, an heir is a person who is related to you and entitled to receive your property and assets if you die without a will, or by intestate succession.

Your heirs include your spouse, children — or ‘issue’ which includes your grandchildren — your parents, your brothers and sisters, their issue, your grandparents, aunts and uncles, issue of your predeceased spouse, next of kin and on.

If you have no relatives at all, your property would become, or ‘escheats’, property of the state of California.

Contact us online or call LifePath Law, APC, to speak with a lawyer if you have concerns about the rights and responsibilities of trustees, administrators, beneficiaries and heirs at 916-231-0688. Serving Sacramento, Granite Bay, Rocklin and Roseville, we offer a complimentary phone consultation.

A home is usually the largest asset in a person’s estate, and what will happen to a loved one’s house when they die is an equally large concern.

It will depend on the circumstances of the title, and whether the person had a will or a trust, or no will and no trust. Even if there is a trust, sometimes the trust was not properly funded and there is no deed to the home transferred into the trust.

If there is a deed indicating there is a joint owner, and the owner is still alive, the house passes to the joint owner.

There could be an unintended heir who would become the owner. Everyone named on the deed could be dead, both gone, and now no one legally owns the property.

At LifePath Law, APC, we know nothing is certain and family members often have differences of opinions best sorted by an attorney when it comes to large assets.

We carefully review our client’s details and other available documents to determine how best to proceed.

We Help You Determine Whether You Need To Go To Probate Court

While hiring an estate or trust lawyer was not on your bucket list, it may need to be on your short list. When you are facing a loved one dying without a will but owning property, certain steps must be taken to ensure the property is transferred correctly.

Determining who is entitled to the property depends on the title of the property. Locating a will or a trust is a useful step. What if there is none? Probate will be necessary, and we can guide you every step of the way.

In California, if a person’s property is worth more than $150,000 a probate action must be filed in probate court. A Petition for Probate of Will and for Letters Testamentary or Petition for Letters of Administration must be filed.

At LifePath Law, APC, we work closely with you to ensure your loved one’s real estate transfer is accurate.

We serve Granite Bay, Rocklin, Roseville and Sacramento. For a complimentary phone consultation, call us at 916-231-0688 or email us.

Contact Us Today

We at LifePath Law, APC, believe in providing services in a way that clients can easily understand and meaningfully participate in designing and maintaining their estate plan for their loved ones, as well as be assured that their plan will be administered according to their wishes.