Probate Administration Lawyers in Columbia, South Carolina
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We Help Personal Representatives and Trustees
The probate administration lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina can help you and your family navigate the probate process. Probate is the process by which a will is validated by the courts. During the probate process, the will is presented to a judge who determines whether the will is valid and legal. If there are no disputes about the will (for example, disputes arising from multiple versions of the will or problems with the signing of the will), then the next steps can begin, which can involve paying debts, paying taxes, appraising property, notifying creditors, and distributing assets to heirs and beneficiaries. The probate administration lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina can help you and your family navigate these legal steps.
What are the Steps of Probate in Columbia, South Carolina?
When a person passes away with a will, the first step in the probate process will involve filing the will and supporting documents with the probate court. In many cases, a hearing date will be set, the judge will review the will and supporting documents. If there are no family members or heirs contesting the validity of the will, in most cases, a single hearing can result in the validation of the will and the distribution of assets to the will’s beneficiaries.
The executor is the person named in the will for handling these final affairs, including submitting the will and supporting documents for probate. Part of the process of handling a loved one’s final affairs includes identifying and appraising the deceased person’s assets. It is also the executor’s responsibility to ensure that insurance, taxes, and other responsibilities tied to assets be properly handled. Creditors of the deceased person must be notified and a notice of death must be publicly made so that any creditors who may be unknown can come forward. If a creditor makes a claim, the executor has the right to contest invalid claims. Having a probate lawyer on your side to evaluate these claims, and fight invalid claims can be helpful, especially if you anticipate the will could be tied up in court in this manner. Tax returns and tax obligations must also be paid before the assets can be distributed to beneficiaries.
Once taxes and creditors have been paid, the remaining assets can be distributed to beneficiaries in accordance with the instructions in the will. Assuming the will is not contested, once the judge validates the will, and once debts are paid, heirs and beneficiaries can receive their inheritance. Sometimes, however, beneficiaries or heirs may dispute the will. This can happen if there are multiple wills or if the deceased person changed his or her will shortly before passing away.
Being an executor of a will can feel like an immense responsibility, especially if you are also grieving the loss of your loved one. Fortunately, you do not have to navigate the probate process alone. The probate lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina may be able to assist you. Contact our probate attorney today to learn more.
Power of Attorney Lawyer in Columbia, South Carolina
The power of attorney lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina can assist you if you need help with a power of attorney. If your loved one has fallen ill or is too ill to make financial, legal, or medical decisions on his or her own, the power of attorney lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina may be able to help you. A power of attorney can be used in a variety of circumstances. Power of attorneys are used in situations where a person suffers from chronic illness, is of advanced age, or a power of attorney can be used as part of regular estate planning to make clear final wishes and end-of-life plans. Power of attorneys can also be used in situations where a person wants another individual to handle personal business on a temporary basis. A power of attorney can be used when a person is closing on a home or property, but cannot be physically present at the closing, or when a person wants to give another person the ability to perform certain responsibilities or tasks that require power of attorney. In the case of disability law, power of attorney can grant a trusted family member or caretaker the ability to handle legal, financial, and medical decisions for a disabled individual who cannot handle these issues on their own. Power of attorney can also be important when planning long-term care for a disabled or chronically-ill loved one.
There are two main types of power of attorneys. One kind is a general power of attorney, which grants an individual the right to make all financial, legal, and medical decisions on another person’s behalf. This power of attorney is generally used for end-of-life planning, caring for a disabled individual, and long-term care planning. Limited powers of attorney will generally grant an individual to take action on another person’s behalf for a limited amount of time or in a limited capacity. This kind of power of attorney may be assigned during business dealings where the principal agent cannot be present.
The power of attorney lawyers at the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina can assist you with drafting this legal document so that you and your family can have peace of mind for end-of-life and estate planning. Contact the Jolley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina today to learn more. We are here to help.
We assist with the administration of estates and trusts and advise trustees, personal representatives, beneficiaries, heirs, creditors, and other fiduciaries in administrative matters. We also help resolve contentious family disputes over trust and probate administration, wills, and other estate planning issues that require litigation.
Probate of Estates
Trust and Estate Administration
Trust and Will Construction
Family Settlement Agreements and Judicial Settlements
Modification, Reformation and Termination of Trusts
Trust and Estate Litigation
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