Probate & Trust Administration


If you have experienced the loss of a loved one, be it a close friend or family member, I can assist you with the legal procedure that takes place after a person passes away. If your loved one did not have a Trust, the process is called Probate, whether the person had a Will or not. If they did have a Trust, the process is called trust administration.


Probate is the legal process that appoints an Executor or Administrator, inventories the assets of the Deceased, pays any claims or creditors, pays estate taxes, if any, and distributes the remaining assets according to the terms of the Will, or according the Statute of Decent and Distribution if the Deceased did not have a Will. While often criticized as time consuming and expensive, in reality probate has advantages for those who have properly planned prior to death. The Probate Court supervises at every step of the process, and provides a forum to resolve creditor claims and heir disputes. When conducted with assistance of a qualified attorney, probate can usually be completed quickly, efficiently and economically.


Trust Administration is not fundamentally different from the probate process. An inventory of the trust assets is compiled, estate taxes, if any, are paid, and the remaining assets are distributed according to the terms of the trust. The major difference is that there is no court supervision. The major advantage is the privacy of the process. For example, if the Deceased owned or was a partner in a business, the survivors may not want the business' financial information disclosed publicly. The terms of the trust document control the process, and with the assistance of a qualified attorney, you can gain an understanding of the trust terms and complete the distribution of assets in the manner intended by the deceased.


If you have had a loved one pass away and have questions about the probate or trust administration process, please call 216.225.9181, Email, or use the contact form to schedule a consultation.