Well, the pain comes when you consider how expensive probate can be. Even when a probate is not challenged, you have to deal with court costs, attorney's fees, estate taxes, creditors, administrative fees, and so forth, which as you can guess begin to add up. The average probate is going to cost over ten thousand dollars and if someone contests some provision it can easily turn into a full fledged court battle.
Another issue is how long a probate can take. At the very least a simple probate will take a few months to wrap up (compared to a few weeks in trust administration) but some probates will take years to finalize. The problem with waiting is that those assets are tied up until the probate is finalized. It also means that sales of property, division of assets, or use of estate funds might be held up indefinitely.
As if that weren't enough, probate is a public process. In many states, everything revealed to the probate court is open to public scrutiny and press coverage (if you're important enough for them to care), in others only the probate pleadings are public records. Either way, probate means that people will be able to find out about details of the estate.
Anytime you go into court, the outcome is foggy at best. Even with a clear, valid will a probate proceeding may take a turn against the deceased's wishes. So, what's the answer to avoid the pain and heartache of probate? PLan your estate so as to avoid probate through using non-probate transfers and trust documents. An ounce of planning can prevent a ton of heartache.
Inter Vivos specializes in estate planning and probate matters. Let us help you either navigate through probate or avoid it altogether. Call us at (801) 477-1570 for a free review of your estate.
"Let us earn your Family's Trust"