Hamilton Law Probate
Probate Attorneys in Southwest Michigan
Distributing the assets that someone accumulated over a lifetime in the manner that they intended is a serious responsibility. Michigan's probate process is designed to ensure that the terms of a will are honored or that the state's intestacy laws are followed when no testamentary document exists. At Hamilton Law in Kalamazoo, we handle a full range of estate administration tasks skillfully on behalf of executors, administrators, and apparent beneficiaries. Even when someone died without vast holdings, resolving key issues can consume a great deal of time and a substantial share of the estate's value. Our firm assesses the situation promptly, tells you what you can expect, and guides you through probate with the utmost skill and efficiency.
Probate is typically an extensive process, although the length of time needed to complete the process depends on the size and complexity of the estate and the local rules of the county in which the decedent's assets are being probated.
Every probate proceeding is unique, but most involve the following steps:
- Petitioning for appointment as personal representative
- Filing the will in probate court
- Developing a strategy for managing and completing the estate administration process
- Providing notice to named and statutory heirs
- Locating assets and bringing them into the estate
- Creating an inventory and appraisal of estate assets and debts
- Paying of taxes, money owed to creditors, and other estate expenses
- Distributing of estate assets to heirs
If the estate value is under the statutory limit, a simplified probate process may be used or assets could be transferred through an affidavit. In relatively straightforward matters involving larger estates, the probate might be unsupervised, where court approval is only required at the outset and completion of the process. Supervised probate is more appropriate for complex or disputed matters that necessitate closer handling from the court.
Regardless of the procedure that suits your situation, we will guide you through the probate process as quickly and efficiently as possible. If you have been named as the personal representative in someone's will, our Southwest Michigan firm will answer your questions, represent you before the court, and handle any objections that exist. We also offer sound counsel on related estate planning matters such as the creation of trusts and power of attorney documents.
Hamilton Law represents estate representatives and potential beneficiaries in a full range of probate matters, including cases arising from disputes. Please call 269-488-8394 or contact us online to make an appointment for a free consultation at our office in Kalamazoo. Our office is available for in-person appointments. We also offer virtual telephone consultations and appointments.