How Long Do We Have To Probate A Will?
You only have four years to probate a will. After that, you might fall into an exception, but usually the judge won’t allow you to probate that will anymore. Sometimes that has harsh consequences because the estate is then subject to Texas intestate laws. Oftentimes a person will leave everything to their surviving spouse in their will, but if the surviving spouse doesn’t take the will to have it probated with the court within four years, the children could become the heirs to all of the assets instead. It’s really important not to delay having a will probated once someone passes away.
What Are The Common Costs Involved In A Probate Case?
In a regular probate case, court fees vary by county but can be quite expensive. Right now, in Travis County, it’s about $400 to open up a probate case. If you don’t have a will, it’s closer to $1,300 because we have to appoint an attorney ad litem, which is a second attorney. That attorney’s job is to make sure we’ve found all of the heirs and are reporting them to the court. Then, you have to pay the probate attorney. Most probate attorneys charge between $250 and $350 per hour, and although retainers vary from firm to firm, they are usually several thousand dollars. Lastly, there are administrative costs, such as preparing new deeds in the name of the heirs, which are oftentimes several hundred dollars per deed.
Can Someone Navigate The Probate Process On Their Own Without An Attorney?
Most probate court websites explicitly state that they do not allow you to attempt to represent yourself in probate court. This is because most estates involve the rights of multiple parties. There are usually several heirs, creditors and other parties. There’s also the factor of expense, oftentimes you have to pay up to $1300 just to file in probate court. It’s complicated and people get it wrong. If you don’t do everything perfectly, you could lose your filing fee. You absolutely need a probate attorney to work with you to transfer the assets over.
For more information on Timeframe To Probate A Will in Texas, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (512) 851-1248 today.