Trust Our Nashville Probate Attorneys to Help You Navigate Complex Probate and Estate Matters
Helping clients through probate with compassion and care
When a loved one passes, his or her property and assets are distributed through a legal process called probate. Generally speaking, most estates go through the probate process, so most families require the services of a probate attorney after a loved one has died. Where there is a will, the probate process determines its validity or provides any individuals contesting it with an opportunity to be heard. If an individual has died without a will, the probate process distributes the estate according to Tennessee statute. Whether or not your loved one had a will, navigating this process can be extremely stressful and emotionally taxing after your loss. Trust The Nevin Law Firm’s father-son attorney team to handle your case with compassion and calm, while fully representing your interests and those of your loved one.
Probate administration by reputable and highly-respected Tennessee attorneys
The probate process begins when your loved one’s will is submitted to the court, and a lengthy process can follow:
Appointing an executor or executrix – Often, a will specifies an individual to serve as the legal representative for purposes of administering the estate after death, but if your loved one has not done so, it may be necessary to appoint a representative. This can be a significant role, and an experienced estate administration attorney should be guiding you through this appointment. To understand the role of an executor read: What Does an Executor Do?
Establishing validity of the will – Generally speaking, a will is valid if it is genuine, was made in accordance with applicable laws, and was made by your loved one when he or she was fully competent. One or more hearings may be necessary to establish that the will is valid. Where validity is at issue, the future of your loved one’s estate is at stake, and it is important to consult with competent legal representation.
Contesting the will – Any number of people can contest your loved one’s will, including yourself, and there are a variety of grounds on which a contest can be made. A challenge to the validity of the will can add to the time and cost associated with the probate process, and because this is a complicated area of the law, it is best if a knowledgeable probate attorney represents you through a will contest.
Deciding issues of guardianship – If your loved one has left behind minor children and a guardian was not already specified in the will, the probate process makes this determination. Much is at stake during these proceedings, so it is important to involve an attorney as soon as possible.
Nashville father-son probate attorneys protecting your loved one’s intentions
A contest to the will can be made by a number of people who have an interest in the will, such as other relatives or a spouse, and these can be lengthy and emotionally draining proceedings. One might choose to contest a will if it is believed that your loved one was under intense pressure by someone else to alter their will in a certain manner. Another circumstance under which a will might be contested is where it is feared that your loved one was fraudulently induced into signing the will at issue. Additionally, if it did not appear that your loved one was mentally competent at the time the will was created or you think the will is a forgery, it might be contested. The legal grounds for contesting a will are complicated and best left to the probate and estate planning attorneys at The Nevin Law Firm.
A boutique law firm providing estate planning services to help you and your family avoid probate
There are certain actions you can take while we are helping you with estate planning that can simplify the probate process when you pass – or avoid it altogether:
Altering property ownership – If you are the sole owner of your property when you pass, in most cases that property passes through the probate process, to be administered with the rest of your estate. There are several models of property ownership, however, that enable your property to pass directly to your loved one of choice, without having to go through the probate process and be subject to contest.
Establish a living trust – Functioning much like a will, you can establish a living trust that sets forth your property and assets, and contains instructions for distribution of these upon your passing. Unlike a will, the living trust does not need to pass through probate for your assets to reach your loved one. This estate planning tool is often a good idea for those with substantial assets to protect, and The Nevin Law Firm can discuss this with you as part of your estate planning.
Contact Tennessee’s esteemed probate and estate administration law firm today
Don’t leave your assets to chance
Probate and estate administration is very complicated, and we recommend that you do not go it alone, especially in your emotionally vulnerable state following the loss of a loved one. Contact us at (615) 244-7708 today or come by our office in downtown Nashville, conveniently served by the Music City Central transit station. We take credit and debit cards for many of the services we offer.