What is probate?

Last Updated on August 22, 2022 by Paul Dunn

Probate is a term that describes a court proceeding in which the court appoints a personal representative to administer a deceased person’s estate. The personal representative is responsible for “wrapping up” the decedent’s final affairs by performing the following functions:

  • Inventorying and valuing all of the assets owned by the decedent.
  • Paying the legitimate claims of the decedent’s creditors
  • Paying the expenses related to administering the decedent’s estate.
  • Preparing, filing, and paying the decedent’s final tax returns and any of the estate’s tax returns.
  • Distributing the decedent’s assets to those persons entitled to receive the assets in accordance with the provisions of the decedent’s Will or in accordance with the applicable “intestate” law for those decedents who have died without a Will.