After a person's death, his or her financial affairs can still go on for an extended period of time. Many aspects of the estate will need addressing, and most likely, probate proceedings will need to take place. This process can take time and much effort to complete, and surviving Texas family members may face complications as well.
Probate generally involves transferring assets from the deceased individual to the heirs or beneficiaries. If the decedent created a will, an executor will likely have been named to address the probate proceedings, and if not, the court would appoint a representative to handle the necessary tasks. Often, the appointed individual petitions to become the executor when making the request to open probate proceedings.
Probate can serve various purposes. As mentioned, it addresses the passing of assets, but it can also handle conflicts that may come about relating to family disputes or questions regarding the will. Some surviving loved ones may feel the need to fight over certain property and handling that issue in court may prove wise to avoid further complications. Additionally, if someone believes that the will does not reflect the true wishes of the deceased or that a newer will should be used, the probate process can help clear up which document is valid.
As these scenarios show, probate can be a very involved process. There are certain ways that individuals could go about avoiding these proceedings, but if a deceased party did not do so, family members will likely need to ensure that probate is properly carried out. Texas residents who want to receive more information on this process may wish to consult with knowledgeable attorneys.
Source: news-gazette.com, "To thine own probate be true, Part I", Brett Kepley, Feb. 25, 2018