Probate Attorney Los Angeles
Serving Personal Representatives
We Help You Navigate California's Court System
At Best Coast Law Group we work closely with our probate clients to help navigate the court system as conveniently and efficiently as possible. We understand this is a difficult time and so our focus is always on providing excellent legal services efficiently and with clear and concise communication.
A typical probate in California can require a year or more to close. The first step in the process is to have our client appointed as personal representative of the estate. Publishing in the local newspaper, notifying interested parties and obtaining a bond are services our office seamlessly handles for our clients so that the process begins as efficiently as possible.
Once our client is appointed as personal representative, we will begin working with a court-appointed probate referee (appraiser) to value various assets in the estate. We immediately notice all required creditors on our client’s behalf to ensure collection issues do not hold up the administration of the estate. If a sale of real estate is required, our office works closely with our client’s realtor, as well as escrow and title representatives to make sure all court-required notices and paperwork are attended to.
The assets will be marshaled, creditor claims paid and interested parties noticed of the administration. As soon as possible, our office drafts the final accounting and petition for distribution. At all times we represent our clients at court hearings and obtain certified copies of orders, letters of administration, and any other documents our clients may require.
Los Angeles Probate Attorneys Fees
In California, Probate Court attorneys fees are calculated based on the gross appraised value of the probate estate as follows:
• 4% of the first $100,000
• 3% of the next $100,000
• 2% of the next $800,000
• 1% of the next $9 million
The attorneys fees are paid at the end of the probate administration and do not include filing fees, publishing fees and other probate costs.
Los Angeles Probate – Small Estate Affidavit
If the total value of the probate assets is less than $180,000, we may be able to assist you in avoiding a formal probate. A small estate affidavit is usually an available option in such a case and will save you considerable time and money in the administration of the estate.
Los Angeles Probate – Spousal Property Petition
If your spouse died with assets that were not owned in joint tenancy or community property with right of survivorship, we may be able to assist you in filing a spousal property petition. This type of petition is far less time consuming and expensive than a formal probate and is only available to married couples or domestic partners in certain situations.
Frequently Asked Questions
Our team specializes in simplifying the estate-planning process so you and your loved ones can feel certain about every decision. Start with this overview, and then book a consultation when you’re ready to talk more.
What is an estate plan?
A comprehensive estate plan is a set of documents that allows you to plan for incapacity, determine who inherits your assets and according to what terms, and select an individual to serve as guardian of your minor children. You can learn more here.
What is the difference between a will and a trust?
Under CA law, if you only have a will your property will be subject to probate court at your death. If you have a trust you can avoid probate court and your estate can be administered privately by your loved ones. You can learn more here.
Why do you recommend avoiding probate?
A California probate is very time-consuming and expensive. The personal representative and his or her attorney are both paid a percentage of the appraised value of the estate. There are also filings fees, publishing fees and appraiser fees associated with a probate that you typically avoid when you have a trust. You can learn more here.
How much does an estate plan cost?
We offer flat fees for clients beginning the process of estate planning. If you have an existing estate plan, we will review and modify that plan at our hourly rate. You can learn more about our packages and pricing here.