Widely Recognized — Locally Trusted
CJB Law handles a wide variety of probate law cases throughout Minnesota and North Dakota. Our legal team is remarkably dedicated, and we have a long-established history of success representing our clients in all matters of probate law. Probate law cases can be emotionally charged and intimate to all parties involved. We take great care in understanding every unique detail of your case from start to finish.
Knowledge and Experience
We work closely with you to ensure that you’re being taken care of throughout the probate process. Probate can be complicated or simple – depending on the estate and various factors that may affect the complexity of the process. Our experienced probate attorneys will be with you every step of the way to ensure that your estate is handled with care and according to the wishes of the deceased. Our probate law background includes: Estate Planning Documentation | Last Will and Testament | Revocable Living Trusts and Irrevocable Trusts | Codicil | Living
What Is Probate?
Probate refers to a legal process that determines how a decedent’s estate is distributed after their passing. An experienced probate attorney will assist with providing legal guidance, advice, and any services that could benefit the named or appointed executor, administrator, or personal representative regarding the decedent’s affairs. We’ll work with you to ensure that the debts and applicable taxes are paid — along with seeing that the remainder of the estate is distributed according to the wishes of the descendent.
CJB Law can help you navigate:
- Collection, inventory, and appraisal of the deceased’s assets
- Protecting the estate’s assets
- Distributing the remaining assets to legally responsible parties
- Paying debts of the deceased
Additionally, a title change will typically go to probate if the property is individually owned. In any of these probate cases, an experienced probate and estate planning attorney can help you prepare. To secure the wishes of a descendent, legal counsel is a must.
It should be noted that not all estates require probate, and there are cases where the process is not needed. This may be the case for property in a trust. Similarly, annuities, IRAs, life insurance policies, and other types of holdings may pass directly to beneficiaries.
The Probate Process
What Does it Look Like?
In Minnesota, probate requires a long list of steps to properly manage the process. Our attorneys can guide executors through every step to ensure that the probate goes as smoothly as possible. Here are the proper steps for probate in Minnesota.
- File proper documentation with the court to commence administration
- Contact beneficiaries and heirs
- Obtain tax ID for the estate
- Open bank account for the estate
- Inventory estate assets
- Sell assets if necessary
- File last income tax return of deceased
- Prepare federal and state income tax
- Prepare fiduciary accounting
- Distribute assets
- Finalize probate through proper documentation
Our Probate Services
Every probate estate is unique, so having a dedicated and experienced probate attorney can make the process a better experience. It may be confusing, especially following a loss. The designated executor is burdened with a lot of responsibility — most of which they are not prepared for. We’ll help you navigate the probate process from start to finish. Furthermore, probate services come out of estate funds, which means that the executor’s personal funds are left untouched.
When it comes to last will and testament, avoiding probate is the most popular course of action. Depending on the estate or properties, this can be complex, time-consuming, and expensive. We’ll help with drafting crucial documentation to protect your best interests and the future of your estate. We also help with pour-over wills and additional methods of protecting your family and avoiding unwanted probate with transfers. Our experienced attorneys will help walk you through the process and help you navigate the law to the best of your ability.
Living trusts are a crucial part of determining the future of your assets after passing. There are some considerable differences between trusts and a will — most notably, how probate plays a role. Unlike a will, a living trust can help you mitigate the probate process. Interest in the property and designated assets transfer to the trust during your lifetime — which is somewhat of a “loophole” when looking at effective ways to manage assets after death. We’ll help save your family time and money by sidestepping the probate process.
We can also help with addendums for an existing will, otherwise known as a codicil. The probate process can be impacted by deaths, births, marriages, and even divorce cases. It’s not uncommon for personal wishes regarding an estate to change based on personal events. Our experienced probate attorneys can help you make the changes you need to existing wills in order to protect your best interests.