Guiding Families Through The Probate Process

Probate is the process by which courts appoint a personal representative to manage an estate's assets, pay claims and make distributions to survivors. At Hess & Jendro Law Office, P.A., our attorneys have extensive experience working with personal representatives and families to make what is often a difficult and lengthy process less stressful and less time-consuming. The personal representative must collect assets, evaluate and prioritize claims, and account to the court for all distributions.

Upon Death, Property Of The Deceased Is Part Of Their Estate

After all interested persons are notified, the personal representative locates the assets and works to transfer ownership of them from the decedent to the estate. Our probate lawyers know how to find items that might have been overlooked and make the transfer. Not all property is included in this distribution. Jointly owned assets, such as real estate or bank accounts jointly owned or owned as joint tenants, automatically become sole property of the surviving person. Life insurance benefits go to the named beneficiaries rather than the estate. Also, the person who died might have chosen to bypass probate by placing property into a trust, which in turn must be administered. Even if there is no valid will, assets can be passed through intestate succession under the statutes here in Minnesota.

Skilled Probate Advice From Beginning To End

Our probate law lawyers will work with you to ensure that the probate case moves smoothly from the date the will is filed to the time that property is released to beneficiaries. We handle tasks such as these:

  • Inventory and appraisal: We assist representatives in their duty to itemize and set a value to each specific asset in the estate.
  • Choice of formal and informal probate: Informal is commonly used with estates that are straightforward and involve no disputes. It is less expensive and preferred when possible. In this case, probate is a matter of paperwork. If a district court judge needs to review the case because there is no will, there are claims or more debt than assets, probate becomes a formal process.
  • Management and preservation: Our attorneys help clients keep everything on schedule to prevent missed payments, approval of claims because of missed deadlines, unnecessary expenses or squandered funds.
  • Special administration: This probate proceeding can be formal or informal, but often immediate action is necessary for a probate registrar to appoint a special administrator before a personal representative is appointed. We have experience in this special area of the law.
  • Distribution: Hess & Jendro Law Office assists in the management of a complete, efficient property distribution after the will's terms have been confirmed, and each item has been absorbed into the estate.

For each of our probate clients, we handle not just the necessary paperwork but also any disputes with beneficiaries and those challenging the administration of the estate.

Assistance With Opening And Closing Bank Accounts Related To The Estate

Even for smaller estates, gaining the legal authority to a decedent's bank accounts can be complicated. Our Elk River probate attorneys will investigate the individual's financial history and find accounts that could easily be missed. We know how to complete the paperwork and establish control over the relevant funds so that your duties as representative can be completed.

Contact Our Experienced Probate Lawyers For Advice

If you are a personal representative or someone looking to challenge a will, our experienced and compassionate attorneys can assist you. Call Hess & Jendro Law Office, P.A., in Elk River at 763-200-6626 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation. We serve the people of the Twin Cities and Central Minnesota.