Mississippi Probate Attorney (Estate Attorney)
The term Probate means to admit a will for proof in court or to administer the estate of a person who died (decedent) without a will. It is the process by which the property of a person who has died is disposed of and the process by which the payment of the debts of the decedent from assets of his estate is made. Probate is required in order to lawfully transfer property owned by the person who has died to either to his designated beneficiaries if he had a will, or his heirs-at-law if he had no will. The process begins by filing a petition with the Chancery Court of the county in which the decedent had his fixed place of residence. The petition is filed by the person designated in the will as the executor, or the next of kin if the decedent died without a will. There are other provisions for the appointment of other people as executor or administrator in certain circumstances. The court appoints the executor or administrator and the process begins. Notice is provided to potential creditors of the decedent by publication in the newspaper. After 90 days from first publication, assuming all things have been completed in the estate, a petition is filed to close the estate and discharge the executor or administrator. The court hears the petition and enters an order as appropriate. An estate tax return is required if the estate is valued at a certain level. Normally CPAs are retained to assist the attorneys in this process. Once the estate is closed and the executor or administrator is discharged, a copy of the discharge order is normally provided to the Mississippi State Tax Commission, the Chancery Clerk of the county where land is located, and any other agency which handles titles to property, and that agency will accept the order and change the title of the property to reflect the new owner as designated by the court.
There are instances in which conflicts arise, such as between siblings, and those conflicts must be resolved by the court. Sometimes a person may wish to contest a will. In that instance, a petition is filed and eventually a hearing is held by the court to determine whether or not the will should stand. One of the main reasons people contest wills is because undue influence is exercised to cause the testator to make the will. For example, if a caregiver of an elderly sick person causes that person to make a will naming the caregiver as the beneficiary, undue influence may cause that will to be set aside. There are other reasons recognized by law for setting aside wills.
It is important that you contact an informed Mississippi Probate Lawyer, Mississippi Estate Lawyer and an experienced Mississippi Probate Attorney, Mississippi Estate Attorney as soon after the death of your loved one as possible. This can help avoid unauthorized taking of estate property, can ensure that all matters are handled honestly and with full court approval, can reduce conflicts among heirs and siblings, and can help you through the difficulties of losing your loved one.
Please contact us to arrange for a confidential consultation with informed Mississippi Probate Lawyers, Mississippi Estate Lawyers, and experienced Mississippi Probate Attorneys, Mississippi Estate Attorneys.