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Answering Your Questions About Probate, Trusts And Wills

You will have many questions when you are looking to craft your estate plan in Florida. Those questions are vital to resolving the matters ahead of you. Often, your unique set of circumstances will inform the answers you get.

However, there are many out there questions with answers not dependent on your situation. The team at Rita Law Firm, P.A., has put together some of the most often-asked questions our lawyer gets to help you understand what’s ahead.

What is the difference between a will and a trust?

In some ways, wills and trusts look very similar. They both dictate how you’d like your property distributed after you pass. However, from the legal and practical perspectives, they are very different.

A will is a document. It contains all your wishes for your property. It will go through probate court. A trust is a legal entity that you create. You assign property to it, and when you pass, the trust does not go through probate at all, but your heirs will be able to access that property.

Does all property go through probate court?

If you do not have a trust, much of your property will go through probate in Florida. However, there are some instances where your estate can avoid probate court. Certain assets can avoid probate, such as a Florida homestead. Smaller estates typically will. However, if you have signing assets in Florida, there is a strong chance your estate will go through probate unless you take action.

How long does probate take?

The minimum amount of time that probate can take is 90 days. This is the waiting period for creditors to submit claims on an estate. However, in reality, the probate process takes much longer. If there is a dispute on the relevant facts of the estate, probate may take years to resolve.

What happens to out-of-state/country property?

Generally speaking, property owned in other states or countries will be resolved according to the local probate or estate law. However, that doesn’t mean there is nothing that you can do about those assets. You must take steps to prepare to resolve those matters as soon as you can.

A Skilled Attorney Ready To Help

We help clients from our offices in Wellington and Port. St. Lucie with estate planning and probate law matters. You likely have many more questions about these processes and deserve answers. Call 561-586-5883 or send us an email to get started.