Though leaving a will can mean fewer complications for your loved ones, it can’t eliminate probate. Even with a will, the California probate court will have to approve your selection of executor. The court can also require the named person to post a bond in order to serve. This bond could be a nominal amount or as much as several thousand dollars. Everything titled in the deceased person’s name must go through the probate process to be transferred into the beneficiary’s name. The court ensures all property and assets are properly distributed among the beneficiaries.
Probate With a Will
A probate with a will can still be lengthy and costly, depending on the size and details of the estate. If there are objections to the written will, it could take even longer. The state of California does offer a “simplified procedure” for transferring property in estates with a will which are valued under $100,000. The ability to use the simplified process depends on the type of property involved. Life insurance and retirement benefits do not usually have to go through probate, and a valid living trust could allow probate to be skipped altogether. Although it won’t allow your loved ones to avoid probate, leaving a will could still be one of the most valuable gifts you can leave behind. Due to the time-sensitive nature and possible complexities of probate, you should consult a probate attorney who can guide you through the process. Please call me with any questions at (858) 792-5988 or visit my will and trust contests page for additional information.