Confused about the process of probate? Your top 5 FAQs answered

When a loved one passes away, the last thing you want is legal hassles.

While they may have been lucky enough to have had everything in order before their passing, less than 30% of people do and so, it is likely that you are going to have to seek legal advice regarding their will, estate, and other bits and pieces.

But where to start? Were you named as the executor of their estate? Or is there a dispute in the family over their will? Perhaps, there was no will left at all.

Either way, when you are looking for legal advice in relation to passing, your first port of call so to speak, should be with probate solicitors in Emsworth. As this area of the law is vast and complicated, it can be impossible to navigate on your own and so, seeking legal advice is the easiest way to get the process finished fast and effectively.

But what on earth do probate solicitors near Emsworth actually do? Read on to find out the top 5 FAQ searched in relation to probate procedures.

What exactly is probate?

Probate is defined as the legal recognition in a court of law in relation to the validity of a will. It involves examining any will for legitimacy, handling disputes over assets and discussing extenuating circumstances, such as debts and legal matters surrounding the deceased.

How long will the process take?

Depending on the circumstances, the process of probate may take a few weeks or several months. However, probate solicitors should be able to give you an accurate timeline based on these issues after your first meeting with them. There are many factors that impact on the time and process of probate, such as the legality of the will, familial disputes and legal matters surrounding the deceased, such as businesses or multiple houses.

How do we know that their will is valid?

Your solicitor will contact the Probate Registry Office to confirm that any will left by your loved one is indeed valid.

Be aware, however, that there are many instances that can cause a will to be invalid, such as incorrect signatures, no witnesses and, most importantly, the capacity of the person signing the will. If your relative signed their will when they were legally unfit to do so (such as in cases of Alzheimer’s), their will may not be considered valid.

I’ve been named as an executor- what do I do?

If you have been named as the executor, you will need to ensure that the death certificate is issued, that the death is registered and you will need to begin the process of filling out probate forms.

Can my family contest the will?

Yes, they can, but they are not the only people who can contest your loved one’s will.

Indeed, almost anybody can question the validity of your loved one’s will, from carers to nurses, to friends or even relatives that have been out of the picture for decades.

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