If you’re the executor of a large or small estate, our team of probate litigation attorneys in Bridgeport can give you the help you need to successfully complete the probate process. We can tailor a solution for your unique family and needs, making sure you effectively administer your loved one’s estate. We’ll explain the probate process, handle any problems that arise, and strive to minimize the costs and delay of probate litigation on your behalf. We always keep your family’s best interests in mind during probate. Contact us to speak with an attorney about reaching your goals for probate.

If you’ve heard the term, “probate” before, you may know that it’s not a very popular term amongst the general population. Many associate probates with the death of a loved one, a courtroom, and expenses. Yet with a good team of Bridgeport probate litigation lawyers, the process can be as simple and painless as possible for your family. You may not ever have to see the inside of a courtroom. Each case is different, but we can work with you to identify your goals for the estate and help facilitate a quick conclusion. Our experienced team is just what you need during this difficult and delicate time.

What Is Probate Litigation?

Not every family will need probate after the passing of a loved one. While they may require some type of legal process to fulfill the terms of a will or estate plan, if these matters remain uncontested, the family may avoid probate court. Complex assets, a confusing will, no will, and sibling rivalry may all increase the chances of needing probate litigation. You may need court action to settle disputes and deal with the estate your loved one left behind. Our probate litigation lawyers can handle routine probate matters efficiently, making the process easier on your family.

Contested matters that may go to probate court may include will contests, guardianship suits, modification of a trust, trust termination, or breaches of fiduciary duties. Multiple marriages, step-siblings, high-value assets, nonstandard estate plans, failure to appoint an appropriate fiduciary, faulty planning, and dysfunctional families may all create the need for probate litigation. If you aren’t sure whether you’ll need probate, our attorneys can look over your case and let you know what to expect.

Probate Administration

Our probate attorneys handle a wide variety of estate planning matters, will contests and other probate issues. We can guide you through the probate process from beginning to end to assure that your loved one’s estate is effectively and timely opened, administered, and closed.

We take the time to assure that you understand the probate process and what is required of you as an executor/executrix, or what your rights are as an heir or interested person. Our goal is to have the probate process go as smoothly and effectively as possible for you and your loved one. Should problems arise, our litigation attorneys are experienced in probate litigation and handle any and all matters related to probate litigation, including will or trust contests, breach of fiduciary duty claims, undue influence or lack of capacity challenges, and heir litigation. While we seek to avoid the costs and delay of litigation when possible, we always keep our clients’ rights and goals in mind when determining the best course of action.

We are experienced in representing executors/executrix as neutral probate administrators, as well as will proponents or contestants. We are experienced with the probate process and appeared in many probate courts throughout the state.

Probate litigation issues which frequently arise include:

  • Contesting of the validity of a will
  • Contesting exclusion from a will
  • Claim of undue influence or lack of capacity
  • Breach of fiduciary duty of executor/executrix
  • Trust disputes
  • Missing will

No matter what your probate issue, our attorneys have the experience and knowledge to effectively assist you in reaching your goal.

What Will Happen During Probate Court?

If you do need probate court, you and your family will work with an attorney to pay the decedent’s final bills or debts, distribute the loved one’s estate, and figure out the details of a will or trust. The judge will appoint a personal representative, or executor, of the estate. This person will act as the estate administrator throughout probate to help oversee the process and settle the estate. Your loved one may have named an administrator in his or her will or the court may appoint the next of kin for this task.

Next, the personal representative will (often with a lawyer’s help) locate assets, determine their values through appraisals, identify creditors, pay bills, protect assets, deal with the estate’s tax returns, and distribute what remains of the estate to beneficiaries. Again, how simple or complex these tasks are will depend on the individual estate. A probate litigator can serve as a significant resource during these processes, as well as during actual time in the courtroom. Your attorney can be your confidant and step-by-step guide throughout probate.