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What Are Some Common Costs Involved In The Probate Process?


Probate costs are fairly standard. There are costs, and then there are fees. The costs are the court costs in which you can expect to spend about $1000. And then the home, all the real estate, and all of the property in general, must be appraised by a court-approved appraiser. Every county in the state has several approved appraisers for their county. Cost is based on a percentage of the value of the asset that is to be appraised. Expect to spend between $500 and $1000 in most cases, but if the estate is big then the cost may be considerably more than that. Also, it is necessary to publish the public notification of decedent’s death to enable creditors to file claims against the estate, and that usually costs $500 to $1000 for the publication.

If there is no will then sometimes the person must be bonded, so bonding is another expense. If the probate is open for a long time that fee or bond premium needs to be paid annually, which could be $1000 or more per year. Additionally, the attorney and executor’s fees must be paid, which are identical and based on the value of the estates. Attorney’s fees are set by state law and are a graduated percentage, for example, 4% of the first $100,000, 3% of the second $100,000, and 2% of up to one million. If you had a one million dollar estate, the attorney would collect $23,000 and the executor would collect $23,000. There are definitely some costs involved and it’s almost always more expensive than putting a trust together.

Can Someone Realistically Navigate Probate On His or Her Own?

Yes, absolutely, it is entirely possible for someone to navigate probate on his or her own. It may take you longer if there is discord or discontent in the family, or if you are ill prepared for a hearing and mistakes or defects push a hearing out another 90 days, but someone can certainly navigate probate on their own if they choose to. It can be done but fewer than 10% choose to go it alone. It’s easier to have a firm with experience in probate manage the process for you. For example, we are very prepared when we go to court, and therefore don’t get continuances often, or if ever, so the process just moves much more quickly.

What Generally Happens At The End Of The Probate Process?

At the end of probate, the hope is that it has proceeded in the way the will has laid out, but sometimes there are creditors or beneficiaries who object and contest. Assuming there are no problems, assets get transferred to the named beneficiaries in the will and they become the new owners and thus can do whatever they want with the asset or assets. They can spend it, sell it, mortgage it, rent it, whatever they want to do, but if there are family members who don’t get along, or if there is blended family and they are contesting the rights to any assets, you can expect problems, legal fees, and an exhausting probate process.

What Sets You And Your Firm Apart In Handling Probates For Your Clients?

We stand out from other firms in regard to probates because we’ve done a lot of them and our experience has given us the ability to be very successful with them. Our entire staff is smart and competent and we keep the process moving quickly. We always attempt to avoid any and all continuances, and strive to have things filed timely so that we get you in and out of the process quickly. While it’s sometimes a drawn out public court proceeding, we can at least be efficient and quick in our efforts, which minimizes your discomfort along the way to settlement. We do all of the heavy liftings so you don’t have to argue anything. All that you are required to do is come to our offices and sign the papers. If there are assets or real estate that needs to be sold, we can help you with all of that. We can assist you with estate sales, dealing with automobiles, and anything else that pertains to the assets of the decedent. We will navigate the whole process for you.

Additional Information About Probate In California

Finally, perhaps the most important point to make is that probate is definitely avoidable in almost all cases with essential and proper planning. While probate is a manageable process, still it’s difficult for your family, and heirs, to be required to go to court to deal with the process. The process is not convenient, nor is it enjoyable. If at all possible, it is best to try and avoid the probate process for the sake of your spouse, your children, and for anyone who may be a recipient of your estate if you were to pass.

For more information on Costs Of Probate Process In California, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (916) 915-8770 today.

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