Our firm focuses a significant portion of our practice in the areas of Florida Estate Planning and Probate Law. We provide our Clients with custom estate planning solutions that fit their family and wealth preservation goals. If you fail to create an estate plan, the State of Florida will decide how your assets are going to be distributed through the Probate process.
For many of our clients young or old the responsibility of going through Probate can be extremely stressful and confusing. Let our office provide you and your family with the comfort of a clear path forward for your Probate.
Florida Probate Courts typically run in two tracks with different procedures. The first such procedure is known as Summary Administration. This process is available if (1) a person dies with a will that does not direct formal administration or without a will (intestate) and (2) the value of the entire estate is less than $75,000.00 or the person passed away more than 2 years ago.
Alternatively, if your estate doesn’t qualify for a summary administration, it will need to be distributed in Probate by Formal Administration. This process can be very complicated and detailed but generally it involves providing notice to the Clerk of Court of the decedent’s death, followed by notice to creditors & beneficiaries. Then outstanding debts are paid out of the estate and an accounting is made of the total assets.
Finally, a Court will be petitioned to approve the final dissolution of an estate and the assets will be distributed either pursuant to the terms of Florida’s intestate succession or pursuant to the decedent’s wishes pursuant to a will. This process typically takes many months and will require the opening of separate bank accounts, notices to creditors and potentially dealing with disputed claims of creditors and beneficiaries.