Few people in Oklahoma take the time to plan their estates. To do so may be unsettling to some, but it is a generous gift to loved ones who are left behind. Part of estate planning is selecting someone to be executor of the estate. This job includes seeing the estate through probate administration, which is not always an easy task. The duties and challenges of an estate executor may not be fully appreciated until one has undertaken the job.
Many may have a fictionalized idea of the importance of estate planning. After watching movies about rich and powerful parents threatening to write their children out of their wills or spoiled college students pouting about the limits on their trust funds, people in Oklahoma may conclude that estate planning is only for the wealthy. In fact, anyone who owns property or other assets would benefit from creating a will because they may save their heirs many common frustrations associated with probate administration.
Many people in Oklahoma who are given advice about estate planning are told to avoid probate at any cost. They hear that probate can take months or years, and it is expensive. Planning an estate to avoid probate is preferable to subjecting loved ones to probate administration. However, probate does not have to be as bad as all that. In fact, there are things worse than probate to worry about after a person dies.
Anyone in Oklahoma who has lost a loved one knows that once the funeral is over, an entirely new struggle often begins. That struggle is the complicated and frustrating world of probate administration. Most people understand that when someone dies without a will, the estate goes through probate. However, probate is required when decedents have left a will, and the process can be time consuming and expensive.
For people who own property in two states, traveling may be an easy choice. They may spend most of the year in Oklahoma, then move to another area for winter or summer. Owning a second home provides many conveniences; however, there are also responsibilities and burdens. In addition to mortgages, taxes and maintenance, the possibility that one's family will face the frustration of probate administration in two separate states must also be considered.
Few things stir up past rivalries or open old wounds more than the events that take place after parents have died. Probate administration can bring out the worst in siblings, and dormant family issues may lead an otherwise peaceful distribution of assets to a heated courtroom battle. There are several ways in which parents in Oklahoma may unwittingly contribute to this tension.
Nearly nine months after the iconic musician's sudden and tragic death, Prince's massive estate lingers in uncertainty. Many in Oklahoma and across the country are following the story as a cautionary tale about estate planning and protecting one's assets. In the midst of the chaos, two noted lawyers are seeking the privilege of handling probate administration for the performer's estate. The court will appoint an administrator because Prince died without leaving a will, which typically specifies an executor to administer an estate.
If a person earlier in life has not prepared his or her estate, he or she will certainly begin to consider it when growing older. While the primary purpose of making a plan may be to provide loved ones with a secure future, a person in Oklahoma may also want to make the time and expense of probate administration as easy or unnecessary as possible. That person may weigh several options.
In Oklahoma, those who prepare their estates do so because they have particular wishes for themselves, their heirs and their property after they die. Their wills express those wishes, and probate administration is the first step to ensuring those wishes are fulfilled. When the will is proved to be valid and an executor is appointed, the process of dividing the estate begins. One question that may bring some debate and disagreement is what to do with the house.
It may seem like an honor when someone trusts another enough to leave him or her with the task of administrating an estate. However, even if there is a will, the duties required for successful probate administration in Oklahoma are burdensome and time consuming. If a person has no experience in estate law or probate, he or she may end up resenting the deceased for being left with an overwhelming responsibility.