Probate is a process that allows you to transfer your assets to your beneficiaries when you get deceased. When you leave a will, the descendent recipients have to present it to court within ten days after learning of your death. The court will determine the validity of the will and determine whether a probate proceeding is necessary.
But what happens when you do not leave a will behind? A probate process then becomes mandatory so that the court can pass on the ownership of your probate assets. The probate process is essential as it helps in winding up all your financial affairs. It ensures that not only your heirs get to receive a part of your estate, but also your creditors are paid their dues.
However, there are some instances where you can avoid the probate process. Many people find it to be costly and time-consuming. If you want to excuse your beneficiaries from going through probate, there are several ways you can avoid it altogether.
You may add a joint owner with rights of survivorship to your bank accounts or real estate. When dealing with real estate, you have to make it clear that it is not tenants in common. Indeed, some disadvantages come with joint ownership, such as your account or deed becoming a taxable gift. However, it is one of the best ways you can avoid probate.
You may as well choose to make a beneficiary designation to your bank accounts, your life insurance and retirement accounts. According to the Balance, you may opt to use a Ladybird deed. It allows you to keep your estate when you are alive and, after you die, pass it on to your beneficiaries without probate.