Who Pays The Probate Lawyer?

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Who Pays The Probate Lawyer?

Handling the will of a deceased person is a complicated process. However, an experienced probate lawyer can help the family members with the probate process. 

A professional attorney can answer all questions concerning probate court, legal fees, and what to expect during the probation process. However, the first question many people come across is, what are the costs of a probate lawyer? Moreover, who pays them? 

What does a probate lawyer cost?

When determining who pays probate lawyer fees, it is advisable to figure out how much the attorney costs. The probate fee mainly depends on whether an individual requires a probate proceeding and what type of proceeding he will opt for. There are usually two options to settle the deceased’s estate- affidavit procedure and settlement without court intervention. The affidavit procedure does not involve probate courts and probate lawyers. On the other hand, the latter option does involve probate courts and probate attorneys. 

Ways to pay for probate lawyers

When considering how much the lawyers charge a fee for probation, it is essential to know how the attorney calculates the cost. Here mentioned are three possible ways for a probate lawyer to trust:

Flat fees

Usually, almost all probate attorneys and clients prefer flat fees. The probate lawyers select written documents from the client. It helps them to know the total amount he will charge in advance. Flat prices are also easier for attorneys. They don’t require keeping up with every bit of time they spend on a particular case. But settling the case might take much longer and more costly if there is any litigation. In such cases, a flat fee agreement is not suitable.

Hourly fees

When the probate lawyer charges the hourly fee, the attorney tracks the time spent on the particular case. Moreover, the probate lawyer bills the client for the total time spent. If a probate lawyer is smooth and quick to carry out the probate process, then the total fees of the lawyer will be comparatively much less. However, hourly charges can add up quickly if a Will contest or any other type of litigation is involved.

Percentage of estate value

Some probate lawyers prefer charging a percentage of the estate’s value as their fees. However, every state does not accept this way of charging probate fees. As a result, the client with a higher value of an estate can end up paying an unreasonably higher probate attorney fee. Therefore, one does not use this method often.

Who pays the probate lawyer fees?

The estate is usually responsible for covering the probate lawyer fees, and the administrator or executor owes nothing. Unless the family members deal with an Affidavit Procedure, they will strive to have legal representation when the will’s validity is established. 

To whom will probate layer fees be paid in a will contest if the will goes into litigation? Until the court case is determined, an executor and their legal representation have no right to collect payments. However, if the executor wins the case, they can ask the court for litigation fees.

However, if an individual is involved in the will litigation but is not the executor, they will have to pay the probate attorney charges out of their pocket. The court only awards a legal fee if one wins the case. No individual is reimbursed when he loses the case. 

Sometimes, one sees a 2 percent fee from the probate lawyer. The federal estate tax also applies to estates worth millions or more. 

Now that the estate covers the probate lawyer fee, one should clear the payment after the estate’s final settlement. At that point, one distributes money from the estate to taxes and bills and provides the rest to the owner. 


The proceedings of probation vary greatly, and thus, there is no specific answer to the questions about the probate attorney’s fees. It is usually dependent on what probating the estate involves. There can be very few probate lawyer fees, such as when the estate qualifies for the affidavit procedure. In other cases, the probate attorney fees, such as those involving a Will contest or any other type of litigation, might be higher.

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