In most cases proper distribution of assets of the deceased individual must go through a legal process called “probate.” During this process the executor named in the will or (if the person died without a will) a court appointed administrator distributes the assets to the proper beneficiaries. The objective of the court is to make sure the deceased person’s taxes, debts, and anything else that must be paid back are paid for by the person’s estate and that any properties are distributed to the beneficiaries in accordance to the will or the orders of the court if there is no will.
Probate has to do with the administration of the decedent’s estate. If the decedent had a will the probate process is a matter of making sure that the wishes of the decedent are followed as per the will. In the absence of a will, the court will appoint an executor and the court will be involved in the distribution. Even with a will, probating estates can become very difficult and/or contentious. Having good representation during this process is essential for compliance with California probate law and resolving any legal issues that may arise.