Uniquely Qualified Estate Planning And Probate Attorneys

Skilled Attorneys Simplifying The Complex Probate Process

In most states, including Texas, probate is a necessary but cumbersome process that must typically take place before an estate can be settled. If the person who died (the decedent) had a will in place, probate is used to prove the validity of that will so that the decedent’s wishes can be honored. Probate is typically overseen by the estate executor. However, it is a complex and labor-intensive process, which is why it is a good idea to work in consultation with an experienced lawyer.

In Austin and surrounding areas of Texas, you can find the help you need by contacting Brink Bennett Pargaman Atkins & Sanchez PLLC. Our attorneys will make the process seem simple as we help you identify problems and provide solutions. We will work with you to ensure that probate is completed as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Working Side By Side With Executors

If you were named executor of the estate, you may be confused about your responsibilities. This is understandable, as there are many duties. They include:

  • Locating and cataloging all estate assets
  • Locating and notifying named heirs and beneficiaries
  • Settling any final debts with estate creditors
  • Filing all relevant documents with the probate court and making appearances in court, when necessary
  • Preparing and submitting a final tax return for the estate
  • Distributing assets to heirs in accordance with the will

Probate and estate administration can last six months to a year or more. Any mistakes or omissions as executors could add time and expense to the process – or worse, it could leave you personally liable. For these reasons and more, it is a good idea to work with an attorney

Our lawyers at Brink Bennett Pargaman Atkins & Sanchez PLLC will guide you through the process step by step. We will provide you with details that will enable you to fulfill your duties as the executor and/or trustee in a decent time frame. Our probate lawyers will also work with your accountant to prepare fiduciary income tax returns for the estate. Whenever possible, we will make court appearances on your behalf to minimize disruptions to your daily life.

What Is A Residuary Estate?

Here at Brink Bennett Pargaman Atkins & Sanchez PLLC, we often work with clients who have questions about residuary estates. Clients want to know how they can address it with estate planning documentation and the impact it may have on their beneficiaries.

One of the easiest ways to think about a residuary estate is this: the majority of your estate will be included in your last will and testament. You may also put assets into a trust, give gifts before you pass away or take other steps to distribute these assets.

However, some assets may be left after all this has been done. Those assets are known as your residuary estate. These are leftover assets, but you can plan so that they are distributed correctly.

Why Do Residuary Estates Happen?

There are numerous reasons why a residuary estate may exist. For one thing, even when people try to make a comprehensive list of everything that they own, they may forget about some assets unintentionally.

This can also be an issue if someone doesn’t update their estate plan. For instance, say that you had $500,000 when you drafted your estate plan, and you wrote instructions to leave it to your two children. But you didn’t pass away for 10 more years, and the total value of your estate is $700,000. The extra money is not accounted for, and your residuary estate would contain $200,000.

Why Should You Plan?

If assets are not accounted for, they can spark estate disputes and conflicts between family members. But if you work with a skillful and knowledgeable legal team to create the right type of plan in advance, you can address these issues and avoid any problems.

Talk To Us About Your Legal Needs Today

Our firm is based in Austin and serves surrounding areas of Texas. Contact us at 512-643-3338 or by filling out this online contact form so that we may help you with your probate needs.