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Estate Settlement and Probate

McManus Estate Planning LLC tailors its Estate Settlement practice to meet the needs of clients with properly funded and maintained Trust-based plans. After the loss of a loved one, the emotional shock of the loss may make it difficult for family members to attend to legal issues. Our team addresses these issues with sensitivity; we do our best to settle the estate as quickly as possible and without undue expense. McManus Estate Planning LLC does not engage in probate court administration. We do all we can to help our clients avoid having to engage attorneys for probate court or litigation.

This firm exists so that your loved ones are spared the time-consuming process of settling your estate. The process of transferring all of an estate’s assets and property, wherever they may be located, may be a complex undertaking. If you create a plan that meets the requirements of McManus Estate Planning, you can rest assured that your family will have our financial and legal expertise and that we will work closely with other professionals involved in administering your estate. We help to settle estates quickly and at minimal cost.

Property does not necessarily go through the Probate process after someone dies. Probate refers to the court’s supervision of the transfer of property title to beneficiaries. Any property that is subject to the authority of probate court is called the “probate estate.” “Non-probate estate” refers to assets that are transferred to heirs outside the probate process.

Probate can be time-consuming and costly in Massachusetts. In addition to appraisal fees, executor’s fees, court filing fees, and accounting fees, the estate pays the hourly rate of any attorneys involved. Estate planners generally share the goal of minimizing their clients’ involvement in the probate process.

Trust-based estate plans or other arrangements may avoid probate. Of course, if there is a dispute involving heirs, or if there are doubts as to document validity, survivors may decide to open a probate procedure.

Probate is generally not necessary for life insurance benefits or retirement benefits, which can be paid directly to beneficiaries. Retirement accounts including IRAs, Keoghs, and 401(k) plans automatically transfer to the named beneficiaries. Also passing without probate to the beneficiary are bank accounts of the “pay-on-death” (POD) type; “in trust for” accounts; and accounts with a named beneficiary. The probate process is also not required for many other assets owned by certain legal entities.

Contact McManus Estate Planning LLC for more information about the estate settlement process.