Probate is the name for the entire legal proceeding in a probate court to determine how to distribute the estate of a decedent. Probate is the legal mechanism whereby a court states who gets the estate. Probate of an estate is necessary when the decedent did not plan his or her final affairs beyond preparing a Will.
Appropriate estate planning avoids probate altogether while providing for the immediate transfer of the estate to the designated heirs. While probate proceedings are long, cumbersome and costly, it becomes a necessary process if no living trust was established. Ultimately, probate is designed to protect the wishes of the deceased.
The Law Offices of Joseph P. Foley is experienced and knowledgeable in California Probate matters. Please contact our office for a free consultation if you believe your matter will involve probate.