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Why would an estate go through probate?

Kent area residents who are working on their estate plans often wonder about probate and wills. Probate is something that people want to avoid, but there are good reasons for an estate to go through probate.

Many times, probate is needed because of the assets a person leaves behind. These assets often require a license or registration, such as a house, car, investments and other property.

These items require documentation to show ownership. If a home is to be sold after a person dies and the proceeds distributed, it must be owned by someone before it is sold. This requires probate to transfer the ownership to a person. When an estate goes through probate, the judge will assign ownership to the estate's representative who can then legally sell the house (or other property) to a new owner.

Many different aspects to estate planning can affect a person's legacy. An estate planning attorney is an excellent resource for a family who is working on establishing an estate plan or updating one they already have. They are also experts at probate issues.

Wills, trusts, medical directives, guardianships and many other topics can be covered with an estate planning attorney. These are important matters to be worked out before death to avoid unnecessary taxes and other stresses.

Probate is not always a bad thing and can be very helpful for those who are trying to get an estate in order. An estate planning attorney can help a family navigate the legal process and make sure their wishes are being followed.

Source:, "Why should my estate go through probate?", Garrett Forsgren, Feb. 4, 2017

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To speak with an attorney at Gellner Law Group about estate planning, probate, trusts, wills or tax controversy, contact our law office in Kent, Washington, today. You can call 425-336-2908 or send us an email. We provide representation across the entire Seattle-Tacoma metropolitan area.

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