How Much Time Does It Take To Probate A Will?
by Krishnendu Sheet Legal 28 July 2022
Whether you are an executor, or heir to the probate estate, you would want to know – just how long the probate process will take.
Well, the answer depends on a variety of factors. But, if we go with a general answer, it would take somewhere between a couple of months to a year. Sometimes, the years can extend to years.
Before we can get to the factors that affect the tenure of the probate process, let’s discuss what probate entails.
Probate is an area of law that has to do with the estates, Will, Testaments, and anything that has to do with a deceased person’s property. When a person dies without a Will or even with a Will, the probate court takes care of their property distribution.
If the deceased has left a last Will or Testament, the probate court takes the responsibility of validating the Will and ensures the property is distributed accordingly.
Every Will has an executor that executes the Will. in addition to that executor has to –
- Close the bank accounts.
- Pay any remaining taxes.
- Clean out the house and distribute the taxes according to the Will.
Once the Will is taken care of, the inheritors or heir can settle any issues with the Will in the probate court.
Estate planning is something that is necessary to ensure your children or family members do not fight among themselves for your property once you’re dead. To know more about the Will creation and the things that need to consider, reach out to Probate attorneys in Las Vegas.
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Generally speaking, probate cases take at least a year or close to a year. Although, in unfortunate cases, this time period can even extend to multiple years.
While this is the general tenure of a probate case, the tenure and process might vary depending on which state you live in.
For instance –
- California can take 9 months to a year.
- Texas can take 6 months to a year.
- For Florida, timing will vary depending on the type of administration required.
- New York has taken a long time to settle probate cases. The average time is between two months to three years.
It is important to note that the above list only offers the average time frame to solve probate cases. It might vary depending on case by case basis.
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Probate is a long and complex process. And not to forget the emotion everyone carries after their beloved has died. This is why even courts take their time to solve probate cases.
Other than the court process, there are a few factors that affect the tenure of the probate cases.
- Paying Inheritance Tax: Any outstanding inheritance tax due on the estate needs to be paid, and only the probate process of estate distribution can occur. If the executor is unable to pay the due bill, the probate process will experience a delay.
- Obtaining The Grant Of The Probate: Obtaining a grant of the probate is yet another time-consuming process. After the applications are made, they will take at least three months to arrive. That means if the application is not submitted early on, the whole probate process can stretch.
- Problems With The Will: As we have already said that poorly drafted Will can cause problems. If the Will is unclear and invalid, the family members will disagree with the will and challenge it in court.
- Death Of The Executor: If the executor or the administrator dies during the process of Probate, the court needs someone to be appointed in their place. Unfortunately, this will delay the whole process.
- Missing Beneficiaries: Sometimes, contacting and finding the beneficiaries is not as simple as sound. If the beneficiaries are not easily identified and located, inquiries are made, and searches are carried out.
Overall there are many factors that affect the probate process and extend the process. Because of this reason, it is important that you work with a property probate attorney to settle all affairs without any delay.
That being said, if you are creating a Will, just having an executor will not help you. You need to have a backup executor or a secondary executor that can replace the first in case the first executor is not present.