Pros and Cons of Oklahoma Probate
- Hi, this is Steve Cortes and I am an attorney at the Cortes Law Firm. Today, we are going to talk about the pros and cons of probate. I know most people don't like to talk about probate, but it's important that you know what the pros and cons are. So, we're just gonna quickly look at them and what it's like to go through the probate process.
So first, the pros. For some estates, especially those in which there was no will, the system, the probate system works to make sure all assets are distributed according to Oklahoma state law.
Now, some potential advantages of probating an estate is that it provides a legal procedure for redistributing the property of the deceased if no will was left. It also validates and enforces the intentions of the deceased if a will does exist. It ensures taxes are paid, that claims are paid on the estate, and finally, it provides finality for the person's beneficiaries, and it gets rid of that lingering feeling of uncertainty for the beneficiaries. And if there are debts as part of the estate, it only gives creditors a small window, usually about 60 days to provide a claim.
Now for the cons. Probate is a public record. Which means personal financial information becomes public knowledge. That means anybody with an internet connection will know about your financial situation. Next, there are usually considerable costs to probate an estate, which get deducted from the total value of the estate, meaning your heirs get less. Probate can also be time consuming, holding up the distribution of assets for months, and sometimes years if the family is fighting. Probate can be complicated and stressful for your personal representative, and for your beneficiaries.
So the bottom line is, that while the probate provides a legal process for distributing your stuff, it can create undue cost, delays, and stress for your family. For that reason, many people prefer a revocable living trust to keep their entire estate out of probate to begin with. So, call us today and we can discuss your goals and create an estate plan specifically tailored to you and to your family. Thanks for watching, and I'll see you next time.