What is Probate?
Probate in Florida is the court-supervised process of identifying and gathering the assets of the decedent, paying off debts and distributing the assets to the beneficiaries. Probate Courts distribute your asset. Ledbetter Law Group can assist in handling these matters for you. Contact our team today to help settle the affairs of the deceased.
Florida law requires the assistance of an attorney for Probate.
Probate Assets Include:
- Real Estate
- Bank Accounts without payable-on-death designations
- Stocks and bonds without transfer-on-death designation
- Miscellaneous items such as clothing, cars, furniture, family heirlooms
Oh No! I Do Not Have A Will….
What happens if I die without a Will
(Chapters 731-735, F. S. cover Probate)
You may be familiar with the concept of a Will: a writing signed by the decedent and witnesses that name beneficiaries to receive assets after the decedent’s death. Without a will the assets have to go through the process of Probate. The question now is, do you need one? Our team can help in making this decision.
Without a will Florida law will decide what happens to your money, your home, and your property. The only way to ensure your wishes and desires are carried out is to have a legal will that is up-to-date. When there are life changes such as marriages, divorce, births, and deaths involved changes to an existing will may need to occur.
Typical Order of Priority of Asset Distributuion Without a Will
Only a Spouse (No Children)
- The Surviving Spouse Will Receive All of the Decedent’s Probate Estate
Married with Children (1)
- Without a will, if the surviving children are from both the decedent and the spouse than the Surviving Spouse receives ALL the Decedent’s Probate Estate
Married with Children (2)
- If there are children from both the decedent and the surviving spouse, but there are also living children from just the surviving spouse (and not from the decedent) the surviving spouse will receive half of the probate estate and the decedent’s children will share the other half
Single With Children
- If there is no spouse, but there are descendants (children) they will receive all the decedent’s assets. The probate estate will be divided among the descendants in a manner defined by Florida law. If a child of the decedent has also passed away but has surviving children (grandkids) they will also be distributed part of the estate.
Single with No Children
- If the decedent has no spouse or children but has parents still alive the assets will be distributed to the parents. If there are no parents, but the decedent has siblings, the property and assets will go to the siblings.
Florida Estate Planning, Wills, Trusts, and Probate are complicated matters with many clauses. This is a brief description of what can occur but does not cover the matter in entirety. When a specific question or problem arises, it is in your best interest to consult with an Attorney specializing in these matters.
Please feel free to call and schedule a FREE consultation: (941) 256-3965