Probate is the legal process of administering the estate of a deceased person, which includes validating the will, identifying assets, paying debts and taxes owed, and distributing the remaining assets to beneficiaries. While probate can be a lengthy and complicated process, it is essential for ensuring that the deceased person’s wishes are carried out and that assets are distributed properly. So, what happens if you don’t probate a will?
- The Will May Be Invalid: If a will is not probated within 4 years of Decedent’s death, it may be considered invalid. This means that the deceased person’s wishes may not be carried out as they intended, and assets may be distributed according to state intestacy laws instead of the deceased person’s wishes.
- The Estate May Be Tied Up in Court: If a will is not probated, the estate may be tied up in court for an extended period of time. This can cause delays in distributing assets to beneficiaries and can result in unnecessary legal fees.
- Beneficiaries May Miss Out on Their Inheritance: If a will is not probated, beneficiaries may miss out on their inheritance. This is because assets cannot be distributed until the court validates the will and appoints an executor to manage the estate.
- Legal Issues Can Arise: Without probate, legal issues can arise. For example, creditors may not be paid, and disputes may arise among family members over the distribution of assets.
- Assets May Be Lost: If a will is not probated, assets may be lost. This can happen if the deceased person’s bank accounts, investments, or property are not properly managed or transferred to the intended beneficiaries.
In conclusion, failing to probate a will can have serious consequences. The deceased person’s wishes may not be carried out, beneficiaries may miss out on their inheritance, legal issues can arise, and assets may be lost. If you are unsure about the probate process or have questions about how to probate a will, it is recommended to consult with an experienced probate attorney for guidance. A probate attorney can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that the estate is distributed according to the deceased person’s wishes.
We have helped hundreds of people go through probate; we can help you too! Call our office at 832.408.0505 and book your Legal Strategy Session today! Our office is located at 1100 East NASA Parkway, Ste. 420J, Houston, TX 77058.