Get the right guidance with an attorney by your side. Before you can petition the court to begin the probate process, you must locate the will of the deceased. Note that even if an attorney is needed, you can hire them for very specific issues and might not need them for the entire process. Let's go over the general steps of the probate process and discuss when an attorney might be needed. Remember, only assets that pass through probate are liable to pay debts. Privacy Policy. This is when you report to the court and show proof that you have done everything needed to close the estate. How to Start the Probate Process. If there’s a will, this person is called an executor. This is why you need an Atlanta probate attorney to help. In some states, either you or the court must publish a notice to interested parties that the estate is … Uncontested probate or administration through appointment, no minor heirs: $1500 – $2500; Uncontested probate or administration through appointment, with minor heirs: $2000 – $3000; Uncontested year’s support through final order: $2000 – $3000 . The only comment I disagree with is that technically you can file for probate, if needed, without an attorney if, and only if, you are the only beneficiary. Uncontested Probate. This type of probate requires notice to all potential heirs and settles any contests at the first court appearance. That said, the probate process in Georgia can be expected to take anywhere from at least about six months to as much as a few years. First, locate all copies of wills executed by the decedent. After settling the estate, submit a petition for discharge. Solemn form probate usually only occurs if the executor expects an heir or beneficiary to contest the will. If you are unsure how to transfer ownership, then an attorney is needed. Simplified Probate Procedures in Georgia. For you to execute the codicil, Georgia law requires two competent witnesses who are at least 14 years old to be present when you sign and date your codicil document. Note that all states post the “succession laws” and you can google them by searching: (state) succession law, or (state) intestate succession. A person can die either intestate (without a will) or testate (with a valid will). Ultimately, much of probate is simply filling out forms. Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter! Settling an estate typically involves paying off the deceased's outstanding debts and final taxes and transferring property to any heirs or beneficiaries. What you will need: Court appointment and knowledge of what the deceased owned. These forms can (with the help of EZ-Probate) be filled out by you. Georgia’s Filing Laws In most circumstances, the executor named in the will assumes the role of handling probate. He graduated from our alma mater, GSU College of Law in 2011.   Not all estates require an attorney, however. If there’s not a will, they are called an administrator. Additionally, the representative is also responsible to find out what debts the deceased had and devise a plan to pay those debts. The Probate Process. Only property that is in the deceased’s sole name will be handled under the intestacy laws. It’s always best to have a will and not leave your estate to chance. § § 53-2-40. In fact, anyone can interact with the court system and you do not need a lawyer to do so. People typically keep their wills in a safe place, such as a safety deposit box, but they may have filed it with the court while they were still alive. Schenk: Go Panthers. The content is not legal advice. Georgia law allows an heir to request that the decedent's estate skip probate entirely. He can open a Solemn Form probate or … Once you file the will with the appropriate probate court, you will need to take stock of the assets in the document and to whom they should go. Georgia probate law requires that a decedent’s will must be filed in the county where he lived within a reasonable period of time. However, Georgia allows you to make your will " self-proving " and you'll need to go to a notary if you want to do that. While the book gets into detail into many aspects of estate planning in Georgia, here are three things that will help avoid the probate process: To begin the process, application must be made in the probate court of the county where the decedent died if he or she was a Georgia resident. The executor has two options. If someone dies without a will, they have died intestate. If you’d like more information without seeing an attorney, you can buy my book, Estate Planning for the Modern Family: A Georgian’s Guide to Wills,Trusts, and Powers of Attorney, for a step-by-step guide to estate planning in Georgia. First, you may not need a will at all. Ga. Code Ann. But once you've completed your duties, you will have done a service to the deceased and their loved ones. Georgia allows for a simplified probate procedure if certain conditions are met. Use of our products and services are governed by our Because of this, there are some unique considerations for estate planning. When would you need an attorney: We recommend that at this point everyone should consult with an attorney to review your taken actions. Note the order that you will need to prioritize payments. 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