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Avoid probate with careful estate planning

May 14, 2018 | Probate & Estate Administration

The point of estate planning is to help an individual ensure that one’s final wishes are honored after his or her death. By creating a will, many individuals in Florida intend to leave a set of instructions for how they want their assets to be distributed in the event of their passing. Probate comes into play when a will must be proved to be the true last will and testament of the decedent in court. Some people choose to use certain techniques to avoid probate, as probate can lengthen the time between the person’s death and the distribution of funds. 

Certain types of financial accounts and asset documents allow a person to choose a beneficiary. When it is possible to do so, experts recommend that a person choose a beneficiary and a backup. When the time comes to pass along the assets, they can transfer to the beneficiary without undergoing probate. 

Even though a person can utilize beneficiaries to avoid probate, it is also best practice to complete a will that can include any assets that were overlooked, acquired after the will was drafted or forgotten about. With a will in place, the individual still gets to set the guidelines for his or her assets. It can also be very helpful to update the will from time to time, especially following a major life change. 

The estate planning process can be overwhelming and a bit confusing. Many people in Florida look for help when starting to make their end-of-life plans. An experienced and skilled estate planning attorney would have the necessary skills to make the process easier. 

Source:, “Wills and Probate — What Does it All Mean?“, May 4, 2018