Oftentimes, in the aftermath of someone’s passing, the decedent’s estate must go through the probate process to ensure all assets are distributed appropriately. Probate can often be a lengthy and expensive process, no matter how large or small the estate may be. That said, there are some ways to minimize the costs your beneficiaries may face.
Reducing Probate Costs
Although some fees, such as the court’s filing fee, are not up for debate, there are other fees that may be entirely avoided.
Here are some tips on how to save money during the probate process:
- When you create your will, you can choose an executor. The executor of your will can either be someone you know, such as a close friend or relative, or a professional who may charge up to 4% of the value of your entire estate in exchange for these services. If you do not know anyone who would be willing to handle this job for free, shop around for the best rate and do not be afraid to negotiate.
- If your estate is substantial enough to owe state taxes, your executor may be able to save a few hundred dollars on tax preparer fees. Your executor may want to use your accountant since there will already be some familiarity with your assets.
- You may need an appraiser for personal or real property and the fee will not be avoidable. However, appraiser fees may be negotiable, so do not be afraid to shop around or to negotiate a more affordable rate.
If you are in the process of creating an estate plan and would like your loved ones to avoid probate, consider creating a trust. It is a legal document that, much like a will, can designate beneficiaries. It can also keep your loved ones out of probate court.
Schedule a Case Evaluation with a Knowledgeable Estate Planning Attorney
If your loved one passed or you are in the process of creating an estate plan, the legal team at Patterson Weaver Law, LLC can provide the skilled guidance you need to either keep costs down or avoid it entirely. You can rely on our top-rated legal team for the help you deserve.
Reach out to our law office today at (719) 215-8049 to request a free case evaluation and learn more about what our team can do to assist you during this difficult time. We are available 24/7.