Is a probate lawyer the same as an estate attorney?

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Is a probate lawyer the same as an estate attorney?

What is Probate?

Probate is the lawful authentication and validation of a will. Moreover, the general administration of a decedent’s estate or the estate of a decedent without a choice is also referred to as “probate.” When a property owner passes away, the court names an executor from the will or an administrator (if there is no will) to manage the probate procedure. Therefore, this entails gathering the estate’s assets to pay any outstanding debts and transferring the remaining assets to beneficiaries. 

Probate Working System

Probate is the examination and transfer of an estate’s assets that belonged to a deceased person in the past. A probate court frequently examines a deceased property owner’s assets. Moreover, the court decides how to divide and distribute assets to beneficiaries. Analyzing whether or not the decedent issued a valid will is usually the first step in a probate case.

Many times the deceased leaves a will with proper documentation. However, occasionally, a dead person leaves no intention behind. With both scenarios we’ve listed here, unusual conditions can arise. 

Probate with a Will

A testator is a person who has passed away and left a will. Moreover, the executor is in charge of starting the probate procedure after a testator passes away. A family member often serves as the executor. One may include the details of the executor in the will.

The executor must submit the will to the court—The time to file a case after the deceased person’s death varies from state to state. The will’s filing starts the probate procedure. The court manages probate procedure where one establishes the will’s validity and then recognizes it as the genuine last testament of the deceased. The court gives the executor the previous authority to act on behalf of the decedent after the court approves them.

Probate Without a Will

It is referred to as dying intestate when a person dies without leaving a will. Additionally, an intestate estate is one in which the court has declared the choice submitted to it invalid. The distribution of the decedent’s assets by state legislation is a part of the probate procedure for an intestate estate. Probate may not be required if a deceased person has no assets.

The appointment of an administrator to manage the decedent’s estate typically kicks off a probate court case. The administrator serves as an executor, receiving and disbursing all legal claims made against the estate. 

Finding the deceased’s lawful heirs, such as surviving spouses, children, and parents, is the administrator’s job. Then, the probate court will decide whose assets should be dispersed among the rightful heirs. Most states’ probate laws allocate property to the deceased person’s surviving spouse and children.

Escheatment is the process of transferring property to the government. Most states establish a deadline for heirs to claim assets they may be entitled to.

Is a Probate Lawyer the same as an Estate Lawyer?

An estate lawyer is involved in various ways depending on the specifics of the estate. Lawyers’ involvement depends on the deceased’s assets’ value and whether they had a final will when they passed away. Beneficiaries submit claims and bring legal action when there is no will to protect the assets they feel entitled. When a will is present, litigation comes up after someone questions the legality of the will.

What is the Job of a Probate Lawyer?

Here are some specific examples of typical chores an executor and beneficiaries might receive help with from a probate lawyer:

  1. Obtaining a life insurance policy proceeds
  2. Choosing and protecting estate assets
  3. Getting valuations for the deceased’s real estate
  4. Helping with the payment of debts and bills
  5. We are preparing and submitting all paperwork necessary for a probate court to determine whether there is the involvement of taxes, ensuring proper payment of bills.
  6. Resolving tax problems
  7. Taking care of the estate’s bank account
  8. Transferring property owned by the deceased to the designated recipients
  9. Distribute assets to beneficiaries in full after properly settling the estate and taxes.


A probate lawyer offers legal counsel. Moreover, a probate lawyer performs all the duties mentioned above. Executors and administrators frequently rely more on the local probate attorney and their staff when they are out of state. Some law firms focus on offering complete services specifically for this situation.

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