Understanding the Probate Process in Michigan

Understanding the Probate Process in Michigan

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Understanding the Probate Process in Michigan

  • By: Marketing Team
  • 17 Feb 2024

Following the loss of a loved one, the most important thing to do is read their will—if they have one—and determine who was named as its executor. Sometimes this individual is also referred to as the personal representative or administrator. The most commonly used term in probate law is “personal representative.”

If the deceased did leave behind a will and name an executor, the process of managing the estate will inevitably be simpler. However, tragedies do occur and people die unexpectedly or before they have the chance to write their will. In these unfortunate circumstances, Michigan’s probate code determines the distribution of assets.

What Assets are Involved?

It is always advisable to seek legal counsel from a probate attorney if your loved one has passed without a will, as a lawyer can guide you through the entire process. You might not be aware of how many different types of assets your loved one has, especially if the deceased was elderly and had hidden funds and assets you were not aware of during their lifetime.

Your deceased loved one’s estate can not only include assets they owned, but also include the following:

  • Jointly owned assets, either with a spouse or business partner
  • Assets held in trust
  • Business assets
  • Life insurance payouts
  • Open contracts
  • Retirement accounts

Why Hire a Probate Lawyer?

Even if your loved one has left behind a very straightforward will, there might still be some surprises along the way. It is important to work with a probate lawyer who can help you with arising issues, including debt settlement, court filings, appraising assets, releasing inheritance, and settling ownership disputes.

Being placed in the role of executor, though often an honor for the surviving party, puts you in a precarious position. Without reliable counsel, you can potentially get lost in a minefield and put yourself at legal risk. Reach out to our team for guidance on how to get through this difficult but unavoidable part of life.