No. In fact, one of the most effectives strategies for avoiding probate is to convert as many estate assets as possible into non-probate assets. As the name implies, assets that are considered “non-probate” assets bypass the probate process altogether and can be distributed immediately to the intended beneficiary. … [Read more...] about Are all assets required to go through probate?
A trust is a relationship whereby property is held by one party for the benefit of another. A trust is created by a Settlor, also called a Maker, Grantor, or Trustor who transfers property to a Trustee chosen by the Settlor. The Trustee holds that property for the trust beneficiaries. The beneficiary of a trust can be an individual, an entity (such as a charity or political organization), or even the family pet. Assets held by a trust are considered non-probate assets, meaning they bypass … [Read more...] about How can a trust help me estate avoid probate?
When you co-own an asset, titling it jointly with rights of survivorship means that your interest in the asset will transfer automatically and directly to the surviving co-owners upon your death without the need to go through probate. While joint ownership may avoid probate, it is an incomplete “shortcut” in most instances. … [Read more...] about Can the manner in which I title assets help avoid probate?
There are several reasons why avoiding probate is such a common estate planning goal. One reason is the amount of time it takes to get through the probate process. In the State of New York, creditors have seven months from the date of appointment of the executor or administrator to file claims against the estate. Consequently, it takes a minimum of about nine months to probate even a relative modest estate. More complex estates can easily take more than a year to probate, meaning beneficiaries … [Read more...] about Why is probate avoidance such a common goal?
If the decedent died without leaving behind a Will, the estate is an “intestate” estate and is handled via a proceeding called intestate administration. Fundamentally, an intestate administration is the same as probate in that the basic goals of the probate process remain the same. There are, however, a few important practical and procedural differences. Chief among those differences is that the New York intestate succession laws will determine how the estate assets are distributed if there is … [Read more...] about What if the decedent didn’t leave a Will?
Most estates must go through some type of probate; however, the estate may not be required to go through formal probate. Like most states, the State of New York does have a small estate alternative to formal probate. For estates that qualify, a Small Estate Affidavit may be used in lieu of formal probate to transfer estate assets. As of 2019, the estate must have assets valued at $30,000 or less, and not include any real property, to use a Small Estate Affidavit. … [Read more...] about Do all estates have to go through probate?
Most people leave behind an estate when they die. That estate consists of all assets, both tangible and intangible, as well as both real and personal property, owned by the decedent at the time of death. Probate is the name given to the legal process that eventually transfers those assets to the new owners. Before those estate assets are transferred, however, probate also serves additional functions, such as: Making sure that all estate assets are identified, located, and valued … [Read more...] about What is probate?