Most people have heard of the probate process. You may have seen advertising promoting products or services designed to help avoid probate. This may be desirable in some cases, but as with any estate planning tactic, you should be certain you understand the process before you attempt using it on your own estate.
30 years of experience working for you
I am Memphis-based attorney Mike Parham. At Parham Estate Law, I can answer any questions you may have on whether “avoiding probate” is right for you.
I have decades of experience with creating estate plans and helping people meet their goals and needs. Every estate plan or trust I create is done with careful consultation with you, ensuring that the plan is truly what you need and that it accomplishes your goals.
Should I Avoid Probate?
Like many questions in law, the simple answer is it depends. There are many good reasons to avoid probate.
- Probate can be expensive. The process can be costly, involving the services of a lawyer, court fees and personal representative expenses. Larger estates can generate greater costs and demand more time from lawyers or other professionals.
- Probate is often time-consuming. If the estate is complex, with many diverse assets, business assets or property in states other than Tennessee, it can be time-consuming and expensive, with additional professionals or the need to file ancillary proceedings in those other states. You will need to file tax returns for the deceased and the estate, and you may need to pay ongoing expenses like property tax and insurance.
- Probate is a public process. Another drawback to probate is that the process produces a public record in the court filings. If you have a business or another financial matter that you would rather choose to keep private, using some other method to transfer assets, such as a trust can protect you and your family’s privacy.
No single estate planning option is ideal for everyone. I can help you determine exactly the right options to choose, and advise you of the advantages and disadvantages of estate planning strategies that are available. You want a plan that is right for you, and I work to ensure that is the estate plan you receive.
When we meet, I will explain how avoiding probate can save you time, money and protect your privacy, and most of all, if it is right for you and your family. To learn more about my estate planning services, call my law office in Memphis at 901-617-1948 or use my online contact form.