What Is Probate?

Posted by Janssen Estate Probate and Elder LawDec 19, 20220 Comments

what is probate

Janssen Estate Probate & Elder Law can serve as your guide if you seek to understand, ‘What is probate?' Janssen Estate Probate & Elder Law has been serving our clients in the Kansas City Metropolitan Area with excellence for 35 years. As we believe knowledge is key when it comes to estate planning, our expertise ensures clients make wise choices when planning their estate.

This comprehensive guide will immerse you in the world of probate. We'll explain its intricate workings, provide insights into its function, and discuss its pros and cons as well as why hiring an attorney might be worthwhile. Furthermore, we offer tips for selecting an ideal attorney. Moreover, our firm stands ready to be part of your journey through probate proceedings and will suggest some actionable steps that will assist in this often complex process.


What Is Probate? 

Probate is a legal process that oversees the distribution of assets after death. The probate process ensures the debts of the deceased are paid and the remaining assets are distributed to their rightful beneficiaries.


How Does Probate Work? 

The probate process includes various steps which are critical in its completion, such as:

  • Filing of Will: After death, their will or testament should be filed with the court and an administrator appointed by them if no will exists.
  • Notifying Heirs and Creditors: All creditors and heirs will be informed about these proceedings.
  • Appraisal of Assets: Every asset belonging to the estate will be appraised.
  • Debt settlement: When someone passes away, their debts can be settled with assets from their estate.
  • Asset Distribution: Once all debts have been settled, any remaining assets are distributed according to their wills' instructions.


When is Probate Required? 

In general, probate will likely be required if there is no legal way around it. Probate will usually be necessary if someone who has died left a will. Some assets like joint tenancy and trusts with designated beneficiaries can often be transferred directly without going through probate.


Advantages and Disadvantages of Probate


  • Structured Process: Probate is a legal process with a definite structure, providing order and fairness during its proceedings.
  • Creditor Settlement: This step ensures that creditors of a deceased are paid out of their assets.


  • Time-Consuming: Probate can be an extremely time-consuming process that delays asset distributions.
  • Probate Can Be Expensive: Legal fees and court costs associated with probate proceedings may be significant.
  • Public Record: Probate, as an open and public process, makes public record of the financial affairs of those deceased.


Why is hiring an attorney is beneficial?

Navigating probate can be daunting, which is why having the assistance of an attorney who specializes in probate can make things much simpler:

  • Legal Expertise: Attorneys possess in-depth knowledge of probate laws and can offer valuable guidance throughout the probate process.
  • Reducing Stress: Legal issues can be emotionally straining during times of loss. Hiring an attorney will ease some of that burden.
  • Avoid Costly Mistakes: Mistakes can be expensive in probate. Hiring an attorney will help prevent costly errors from being made in this process.


When is the right time to hire an attorney?

Consult a legal expert as soon as you start the probate procedure, so they can assist in understanding requirements and making sure deadlines are met.


What criteria must be used when searching for an attorney?

Consider these criteria when selecting an attorney to represent you in probate:


When hiring a probate attorney, make sure they possess extensive expertise.

  • Ask for referrals and check reviews.
  • Understanding and selecting an attorney with fees that meet your budget are two essential parts of legal representation.
  • Make sure your attorney keeps you up-to-date and communicates well.


Why Choose Janssen Estate Probate & Elder Law

We are your ideal solution for all of your probate needs. We offer:

  • Experience: With years of expertise under our belts, we have successfully handled many probate cases.
  • Client-Centered: At our firm, clients come first, ensuring they remain fully informed and supported throughout the process.
  • Affordable Fees: Our fees are competitive and transparent. Because probate proceedings can be an emotionally and financially trying experience, we provide affordable and transparent fees.
  • Proven Results: Our success rate in probate cases speaks for itself.


Suggestions for Action

  • Connect With Us: Reach out to one of our probate lawyers regarding your situation.
  • Collect Documents: Start collecting all documents related to the assets and debts of the deceased.
  • Inform Beneficiaries and Heirs: Make sure all beneficiaries and heirs understand the probate process.
  • Maintain An Organized Environment: Staying on top of probate can be daunting, so keep a record of all correspondence and documents related to it.
  • Consult Professionals: For informed decisions, it is crucial to seek professional guidance on tax and financial matters.
  • Reconsider and Update Your Estate Plan: Witnessing the probate court process may serve as motivation to review and update your estate plan.

Probate may appear complex at first glance, but with proper guidance, it can be manageable. Our firm offers exceptional probate attorneys to guide you through every stage of the process and help resolve any probate issues quickly and efficiently. Don't hesitate to get in touch and begin the resolution of any probate matters immediately! Contact us today at 913-322-6300 or send us an email on our Contact Page.