Unfortunately, a fact of life is death and most everyone will need to face the loss of a loved one at some stage during their life. It is a devastating time, filled with sadness, grief, anger, pain and almost every other emotion available to a human, depending on their personal circumstances.
Needless to say, it is also a confusing time. To make matters worse, the legal situation of a deceased person’s estate cannot be put on hold for long and it falls on certain, usually close, relatives or friends to step up and represent their best interests.
This is tedious, daunting, overwhelming and when a person decides to do it on their own, can be lengthy, expensive and distressing. This is where probate solicitors step in. They are able to support the Personal Representative, the name for the individual who has been chosen by the estate holder to carry out the necessary tasks, in every conceivable way throughout the process, ensuring a swift, hassle-free and economical closure.
There has been occasions where it is fine to do it alone
This statement is true. Regarding very small and straightforward estates, they can go smoothly, especially when there is no need for a deed known as a grant of representation. A professional is able to quickly decipher whether this deed is needed or not and advise their potential client, which can take a lot of the guesswork even out of those smaller estates and allows people to move forward confidently.
In most cases, however, this deed is required and so begins the lengthy procedure where accurate and on-time paperwork is required for the process to flow like clockwork.
Taking the responsibility where possible and allowing their client the time to process the situation, take a breath and grieve when possible, professionals can take charge whilst advising the Personal Representative of each step so that they feel in control of the situation as best as possible.
By taking a bespoke approach, lawyers can see how involved their client wishes to be and reacts accordingly. Everyone knows that some people do well and others do not when required to take charge of a situation, especially after the shock of death.
What happens if a person doesn’t have a will?
If no will can be found, then, unfortunately, the contents of the individual’s estate must be divided up according to intestacy laws. This does mean those close friends or family members, partners who were unmarried or other somewhat complex or relatively uncommon situations will find that the dividing of the contents may not be entirely aligned to what they believed to be in the deceased person’s wishes.
This is why creating a will is so important, even if it is some letter to loved ones without any kind of legal representation and proof. Should there be some kind of conflict regarding such a will, however, it can quite easily be overthrown due to the inability to prove that this DIY will was created under the person’s own authority.