In Oneonta, Alabama, probate is the process through which a Court decides if a will is valid or not.

In the probate process, a Oneonta, Alabama probate court has various duties, including ruling on a will's validity, making an inventory of the estate's assets, and making note of all the decedent's debts. Once the will is decided to be valid, the court will distribute the property according to its clauses.

Wills typically name the person who is to serve as executor of the estate. If no executor is named, the Oneonta, Alabama court will appoint an executor. This is typically the person who stands to gain the most if the will is found to be legitimate.

The executor is the individual who initiates probate proceedings. The person who stands to inherit the most from the will is typically appointed the executor, because they will have the most motivation to help the process go as quickly as possible, so they can get their inheritance.

Duties of the Executor in Oneonta, Alabama

Executors of estates have a various distinct responsibilities. First, the executor must start the probate proceedings. Probate almost always needs to be done before the property in an estate can be released according to the terms of the will.

Furthermore, the executor has to make sure that the decedent's relatives and other people named in the will have notice of the testator's death, typically through the filing of a copy of the official death certificate.

Because people who stand to inherit from the testator may be scattered around the country, or even the world, contacting them is sometimes challenging. One of the responsibilities of the executor is to collect a list of everyone who is entitled to inherit from the decedent, so attempts to contact them can be made. They additionally have to account for all the testator's debts and assets.

Lastly, executors have to actually put forth the effort to establish that a will is valid. As the sole legal representative of the estate, this is their job, and is obligated for them to inherit, giving them an incentive.

How Can A Oneonta, Alabama Lawyer Help?

Because of the difficulties inherent in the probate process, it is a good idea to hire an efficient Oneonta, Alabama probate lawyer, particularly for the executors of estates.