When a person passes away, any assets held in his name alone cannot be distributed to heirs and beneficiaries unless a probate estate is opened. Probate is the legal process of filing a Will and appointing a personal representative. If the decedent did not have a Will at the time of his death, a petition may still be filed in the probate court to appoint a personal representative. The personal representative then has the responsibility of administering the estate and distributing assets in accordance with the terms of the Will. If the decedent had no Will, then the personal representative is responsible for distributing assets in accordance with the Maine law of intestate succession. This process can be time consuming. Carlin & Shapiro, P.A. can assist you with any of the following:
- Drafting petitions to open formal and informal estates.
- Drafting estate inventories and accountings.
- Distributing assets out of the estate in accordance with the terms of the will or in accordance with Maine law of intestacy.
- Formally and informally closing estates.