Do I need to hire an attorney for probate?
I am often asked if it is necessary to hire an attorney to have an estate probated. In almost every case, the answer is yes. That is not to say that in every case there is even a need to have an estate probated; depending on how the deceased assets were named, the type of property, etc.
However, if there is a need for administration of the estate Florida rules require that every personal representative must be represented by an attorney admitted to practice in Florida unless the personal representative is the “sole interested person.”
The responsibilities of the Personal Representative are numerous including collecting and maintaining property, identifying assets, creditors and beneficiaries.If there is no will, the person is deemed to have died intestate.
The P.R. will likely need to obtain a bond to proceed with administration and receive permission from the court to sell any real property. Having a will does not avoid probate but it can empower the P.R. to proceed with several aspects of the administrative process without having to obtain court permission first.
If you have questions about obtaining a will or whether or not probate administration is necessary please call our office.
We offer a free estate planning consultation. There is a consultation fee to review assets following the passing of a loved one in determining whether probate is needed.
The phone lines are answered 24 hours a day at (850) 307-5665.