Losing a loved one is hard enough without having to worry about paperwork and legal requirements. Rountree Law can help you navigate the complicated probate laws and processes.
Navigating Georgia's Probate Process can be complicated and frustrating. In order to begin the process you need to have the correct forms, and gather proper supporting documents. You also need to understand the local customs of your county. Not all probate courts throughout the state operate the same way. While they do, generally, require the same documents, the detail each requires, and the manner in which they process documents can be confusing. Rountree Law takes care of these issues for you, and helps you get the estate settled faster.
A will is not required to probate an estate. A will acts as instructions for the personal representatives to distribute that estate according to the decedent's wishes. If there isn't a set of instructions to follow, i.e. a will, then the personal representative must distribute the estate according to the statute.
Ordinarily, only the person or persons named on the safe deposit box can gain entry into that box even when the listed owner has passed away. However, if a person knows, or is pretty sure, that the safe deposit box contains a will, there is a petition that can be filed with the Probate Court for permission to enter the safe deposit box, specifically, and solely for the purpose of retrieving the will. Understand, however, that you will not be allowed to take anything out, and if the will is located, the bank generally will send it directly to the probate court that issued the order.
The probate process is intended to settle a deceased person's estate. Settle does not just mean distributing gifts to beneficiaries. It also means settling up with creditors. The probate process sets up a mechanism for notifying creditors and allowing them the opportunity to state claims within a certain time. If you, as the executor distribute money to a beneficiary before you settle a creditor's claim, you may be personally liable to that creditor. Therefore, you need to make sure that all notices are properly filed and claims are addressed before distributing any gifts.