ProbateComprehensive Help With Probate Law and Estate Administration
Probate Attorneys and Estate Administration Throughout Los Angeles and Orange County
What is Probate?
Probate is the legal process used to transfer title to assets upon death. The Superior Court supervises the payment of debts, taxes, and probate fees. The Court also resolves all claims against the estate and distributes the deceased person’s property, either according to a valid Will or by statutory rules (known as “Intestacy Rules”) in the absence of a Will.
How We Help
We represent executors and administrators of an estate who require appointment by a Probate Court. Once appointed, we can work closely with you to:
- Publish your estate
- Bond your estate
- Protect your assets during the probate process
- Collect and inventory your assets
- Help value your assets
- Pay debts, taxes, and expenses of the estate
- Address beneficiary questions and concerns
- Resolve disputes
- Give notice to creditors
- Resolve creditor claims
- Sell real property
- File an accounting with the court
- Make final distribution of the assets
The most common misconception about Probate is that if you have a Will, you do not have to go through the Probate process. This is the exact opposite of how Probate works! A Will, by definition, must go through Probate. The Probate Court rules on the validity of a deceased person’s Will, interprets the instructions of the deceased, appoints an executor or personal representative of the estate, and then decides the interests of heirs and other parties who may have claims against the estate.
The Probate process has many pitfalls which can only be avoided with the help qualified Probate attorney. A simple Probate, without any complications, will still take approximately nine months to one year to be completed. However, if there are mistakes or complications, a Probate can be delayed up to three or more years, depending on the severity of the mistake or the degree of complication. Delays in the Probate system have been further compounded by budget cutbacks, which have strained the court system’s resources and reduced the available number of Probate courts from twelve down to a single court in Downtown Los Angeles.
Probate is necessary when an individual dies owning assets exceeding $166,250 in his/her name. California’s probate fees, set by law, are about average among the states. The fees to settle in court (listed below) do not include special fees for the sale of assets, tax preparation, and litigation.
The approximate cost for probating an estate
Avoid Pitfalls and Costly Mistakes
Our team of Probate Attorneys can help you avoid those time-consuming pitfalls and mistakes, and make sure that your case gets through the Probate court as quickly as possible. Our Probate team is headed up by Samuel Ledwitz, who is a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. Less than one percent of all attorneys in California are certified Probate specialists.
California’s Probate Code
Advanced Estate Planning
Families with substantial estates require additional strategies beyond a typical Estate Plan to reduce and offset Estate Tax liabilities.
There are two common estate planning technique mistakes that we see in our office all the time.
They are Payable on Death (POD) and Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship (JTWROS).
Every year, during our free 3-year reviews, without fail, we find that a few of our clients have inadvertently placed a piece of real estate in danger of going through Probate
California Estate Planning Laws and your Family – Fourth in a Series: How To Initiate a California Probate
The DE-111 California Probate form is an important document that initiates the probate process in California. Probate is the legal process in which a court supervises the distribution of a deceased person’s assets to their heirs.
Ready to do business and handle any trust issues. mary grimes06:15 09 Jun 22 I’ve dealt with 3 different lawyers in regards to my will, my trust. and my LLCI’ve spent... thousands of dollars.This is by far the best experience I’ve had, he’s handling all that, eliminating the LLC, putting my houses back in my name, he’s fair and has a great attitude.I don’t have to go to another lawyer again!read moreRed Castro06:58 31 May 22 Super friendly and helpful staff. Felt confident with their services from the start. Roxanne Ramirez18:14 07 May 22 Samuel Ledwitz has been my attorney for years. Friendly, knowledgeable and accessible. mary emily smiley06:43 06 Mar 22 I am so pleased with everything about this law firm. Thank you Attorney Ledwitz for all your help... and information. Creating my Trust with your firm was a great experience and done in a timely manner. I will highly recommend your business to anyone. Once again, THANK YOU!read moreJenniffeir Suarez03:48 14 Jan 22 I heard about this firm through a friend of mine and decided to make an appointment to see them.I... was so impressed with how confidant and comfortable I felt putting my case in their hands.read moreMercedes Morales21:01 19 Oct 21 Thank you Sam for all your help! Desiree Gasca18:41 19 Oct 21 By Darren Chaker: Having dealt with San Diego attorneys too long, I was happy to accompany a friend... there office to update a trust. The staff was very professional, attorneys could articulate a response for any question posed. Definitely talented attorneys.read moreDarren Chaker17:40 20 Oct 20 My wife and I completed our Estate Planning from The Law Firm of Bezaire. we were thinking about... having our estate planning done from last couple of years and it's all done .. Thanks to The Law Firm of Bezaire!!read moreVerna Gonzalez19:15 12 Dec 19 We got our trust restated The Law Firm of Bezaire and we are very satisfied with the service we... have received. They answered all of our questions quickly and made this process easy for us. We would definitely recommend this firm to our friends and families. Thank you!read moreGloria Smith17:43 22 Nov 19 Fantastic firm! Richard Knapp02:52 10 Jul 19 The people there are just plain friendly and helpful. Couldn't get better service Jill Gilliam20:54 25 Apr 19 I was referred by a very close family friend to Bezaire, Ledwitz and Associates to do my... Grandmother's Will and have me act as Power of Attorney for my Grandmother quite a few years back. Every time we needed legal assistance, the staff has always been professional and The Law Firm of Bezaire accommodating and because of this, I have always recommended their firm to others as wellread moreBryan C. Carrington09:05 13 Feb 19 We’ve dealt with Bezaire, Ledwitz and Associates on numerous occasions for Estate Planning matters... and have been very happy with their services and friendly manner. They helped us with family estates, real estate and is our first choice for the updating of our wills in the near future. I strongly recommend them.read moreJames D. Barker09:36 12 Feb 19 We found Samuel and his staff to be very efficient and helpful in our recent business with them.... They were always accessible and quick to answer questions or give advice when we called.read moreNick Locis09:28 12 Feb 19 My family and I have dealt with The Law Firm of Bezaire, Ledwitz and Associates numerous times for... Estate Planning matters - always finding them compassionate, approachable, and knowledgeable. I highly recommend them.read moreJack N. Goulet04:24 12 Feb 19 The Law Firm of Bezaire did a last-minute will for my mother with very little advance notice. The... staff did a fantastic job!read moreLathen Cheas04:20 12 Feb 19 only the best says it all !!! VERY happy with Mr. Samuel Ledwitz esq. and staff.Now I have peace... of mind thank-you .read moreWillow Jones-Heger22:46 07 Jan 19 We had a great experience dealing with Samuel Ledwitz when it was time to revise and update our... family trust and legal documents. We feel very confident that we are in very good hands, and that our estate and our legal affairs will be handled with the utmost professional and personal care. Highly recommended.read moreAnn Imberman21:42 22 Aug 18 I was very happy with how my estate planning was handled by Sam Ledwitz & Associates. I would... highly recommend this firm.read moreandrea mitchell21:55 19 Jan 18
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