Unfortunately, loss is an inevitable part of life. If you’re loved one has passed away, you may feel overwhelmed by your grief and the responsibility of handling their estate. If you’ve been designated as the administrator of their estate, you may have to undergo the probate process. While this process can seem scary, it’s a necessary step in honoring the deceased individual’s wishes after they pass away. Please continue reading to learn about this complex legal process and how an experienced Montgomery County Probate Attorney can help you through each step of the proceedings to ensure all matters are handled.
What is probate in Maryland?
Throughout the U.S., every state has a different probate process. The probate process is essentially the state of Maryland’s way of ensuring the deceased’s assets pass properly to their descendants and that the will is valid. It’s crucial to note that not all matters have to go through probate. According to Maryland’s Orphan’s Court, the decedent’s property must go through probate only if the property was only in their name. If a survivor jointly owns the property, they will decide the property and avoid the probable process.
What is a simplified proceeding?
Unlike some states, Maryland offers simplified probate proceedings to help grieving families avoid a lengthy process. If the assets required to undergo probate are valued at less than $30,000, the estate may be considered a “small estate.” If this is the case, the process can typically be settled within two months because no inventory has to be filed. In addition, The Orphan’s court will not have to approve Administration Accounts.
This alternative probate process is also available for spouses who receive assets worth less than $50,000. The “Modified Estate Administration” procedure also does not require the Orphan’s court to get involved and can be resolved within 110 months, depending on the case’s specific circumstances.
What does the process entail?
As mentioned above, the probate process can be time-consuming, as several steps must be taken to settle these proceedings. Firstly, the will must be filed with the register of Wills in the jurisdiction where the decedent resides at the time of their death. The estate executor must file a petition for probate and all the necessary forms. From here, the executor must create an inventory of all assets, identify remaining creditors, pay outstanding debts, pay court fees and taxes, locate beneficiaries, and distribute the assets to all the designated beneficiaries. Finally, you will complete the process by filing a Certificate of Compliance to close the estate.
If you’ve been appointed the executor of a loved one’s estate, please don’t hesitate to contact a trusted attorney from the legal team at JD Katz. Our legal team is prepared to guide you through this process today.