Probate administration in Michigan is a slow process that takes at least several months, possibly a year or longer if the estate is especially large, complex, encumbered, or if the family is arguing. Dealing with probate and estate administration may feel overwhelming for grieving family members, but an experienced probate lawyer can guide you through the steps of probate in Michigan.
For trusted and efficient probate administration services in and around Ann Arbor, MI, call Bassett Murray Law Group at (734) 930-9200.
How Probate Works in Michigan
By default, assets the decedent owned in his or her name only, including bank accounts, real estate, and any property worth over $15,000 (adjusted annually), must go through a Michigan probate court. Assets exempt from probate include:
- Property the decedent jointly owned with someone else, like a surviving spouse
- Payable-on-death accounts with a designated beneficiary
- Assets the decedent had placed in a living trust
Additionally, smaller estates may qualify for a quicker and less complex probate process in Michigan.
The Probate Administration Steps
The nominated personal representative or a family member if there is no will or no nominated personal representative must present the will and a petition or application to the Probate Court to be appointed as personal representative. f The appointed Personal Representative must then:
- Notify the heirs and anyone else named in the Will of the appointment
- Publish death notice in local newspapers and give formal notices to the decedent’s creditors
- Safeguard the estate, compile an inventory of the decedent’s assets, and provide reliable asset valuation if necessary
- Open and manage a designated bank account that uses the decedent’s funds to cover estate administration expenses, like attorney’s fees and ongoing homeowners’ insurance payments
- File the decedent’s last tax returns and pay any outstanding taxes, bills, and valid creditor claims
- Distribute any remaining assets to beneficiaries
- Formally close the estate through the probate court, ending their estate administration duties
Do You Need a Probate Administration Lawyer?
Working with an experienced probate administration lawyer will streamline the probate process and help you avoid costly and time-consuming legal pitfalls, especially in cases of contested wills or highly encumbered estates. The seasoned probate attorneys of Bassett Murray Law Group can:
- Assist you with all the tasks involved in closing a decedent’s estate, like paying debts and taxes, screening creditor claims to determine validity, re-titling property, and distributing assets to beneficiaries
- Help you avoid estate administration mistakes, unintentional violations of your fiduciary duty, and any personal liability for the decedent’s debts
- Facilitate communication between the beneficiaries and the personal representative and help resolve will disputes
- Handle all formal court proceedings and file the necessary legal documentation
- Save you precious time, hassle, and money by knowing your options and speeding up probate
Bassett Murray Law Group, PLLC: Over 30 Years of Experience in Estate Planning and Probate Administration in Ann Arbor, MI
Are you a will executor or personal representative in Washtenaw County? The skilled probate, estate, and trust attorneys of Bassett Murray Law Group can help you handle all probate court matters and comply with your fiduciary duty of estate management and distribution. Call us at (734) 930-9200 or contact us online for reliable, hassle-free probate administration in Ann Arbor, MI.