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Huron Valley Law Center, PLC
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1. What is Probate? Why do so many people say it should be avoided?

Probate is the court-supervised distribution of your assets after your death. The Probate Court appoints a Personal Representative (Executor) to manage the assets in your Estate. The Personal Representative has to account to the Court for how the assets have been managed. The Probate process can be time-consuming and costly. Most Estate administrations take between six and twenty-four months, depending on size, complexity and how well the beneficiaries get along. Also, Probate Court records are generally public. Therefore, if your planning objectives include efficiently administering your Estate, minimizing fees and maintaining privacy, the Probate Court is not the place for you. A Living Trust-Centered Estate Plan can help you to achieve those objectives.

2. What happens if someone contests a Will?

Generally, disputes arise over who gets what and who is in charge of the Estate. When a disgruntled person seeks to challenge the terms of a Will, that person must file a Petition in the Probate Court. While that litigation is pending, the Estate administration grinds to a halt. Will contests can be very costly to litigate and can destroy family harmony.

3. What does it cost to probate an Estate, and how long does it take?

Many different factors determine the cost and duration of probate. These include whether or not there is a Will, the size and nature of the estate, how well family members get along, the location of estate assets and many more. In Michigan, it usually takes between 6 and 24 months to settle an Estate… longer, of course, if litigation is involved. Fees, such as those for Personal Representatives, Attorneys, court costs, appraisals and more, generally total between 2 and 7 percent of the estate’s value.

4. Are all assets subject to probate?

Some assets, called non-probate assets, are not subject to the probate process. These include:

  • Retirement accounts and life insurance policies for which there are designated beneficiaries
  • Property titled as joint tenancy with right of survivorship
  • Bank accounts designated as In Trust For (ITF) or Pay on Death (POD)
  • Assets named in a living trust

5. If I agree to serve as Personal Representative, will I get paid? Are there any risks?

You will receive compensation for expenses and, perhaps, fees for serving as Personal Representative of an Estate. However, the decision to serve as Personal Representative should not be taken lightly. You could be held accountable, and legally liable, for the decisions you make. An experienced estate planning attorney can explain the risks involved and guide you through the process to minimize your personal liability risks.

Upcoming Events

6/15/14: Special Needs Planning Workshop

Special Needs Planning Workshop

Category: Events
Date: 6/15/2014

In this workshop you will learn the critical information needed to plan effectively for your special needs child. 

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In this workshop you will learn the critical information needed to plan effectively for your special needs child. 

2/5/15: Truth About Long Term Care

Truth About Long Term Care

Category: Events
Date: 2/5/2015

Brighton Community Education

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Brighton Community Education

2/10/15: Truth About Estate Planners

Truth About Estate Planners

Category: Events
Date: 2/10/2015

Brighton Community Education

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Brighton Community Education

2/26/15: Client Educational Event

Client Educational Event

Category: Events
Date: 2/26/2015

Highland Library

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3/3/15: Truth About Estate Planning

Truth About Estate Planning

Category: Events
Date: 3/3/2015

Milford Library

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3/12/15: Truth About Estate Planning

Truth About Estate Planning

Category: Events
Date: 3/12/2015

3/18/15: Client Educational Event - Estate Administration

Client Educational Event - Estate Administration

Category: Events
Date: 3/18/2015

Novi Library

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Novi Library

3/24/15: Truth About Estate Planning

Truth About Estate Planning

Category: Events
Date: 3/24/2015

Highland Library

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4/21/15: Truth About Long Term Care

Truth About Long Term Care

Category: Events
Date: 4/21/2015

4/28/15: Medicaid and You: Long Term Care Basics (7PM - 8:45PM)

Medicaid and You: Long Term Care Basics

Category: Events
Date: 4/28/2015
Time: 7PM - 8:45PM
Commerce Township Library more

Commerce Township Library

5/12/15: Special Needs Planning

Special Needs Planning

Category: Events
Date: 5/12/2015

2/11/16: Truth About Estate Planning

Truth About Estate Planning

Category: Events
Date: 2/11/2016
Highland Library more

Highland Library

2/15/16: Client Educational Event - Successor Trustee

Client Educational Event - Successor Trustee

Category: Events
Date: 2/15/2016
Brighton District Library more

Brighton District Library

4/15/16: Huron Valley Sinai Hospital Fair - Healthcare Directives

Huron Valley Sinai Hospital Fair - Healthcare Directives

Category: Events
Date: 4/15/2016
Huron Valley Sinai Hospital more

Huron Valley Sinai Hospital

5/18/16: Protecting Your Investments

Protecting Your Investments

Category: Events
Date: 5/18/2016
Novi Library more

Novi Library

6/2/16: Truth About Long Term Care

Truth About Long Term Care

Category: Events
Date: 6/2/2016
Novi Library more

Novi Library

9/21/16: Understanding Annuities

Understanding Annuities

Category: Events
Date: 9/21/2016
Milford Library more

Milford Library

10/20/16: WXW Annual Forum

WXW Annual Forum

Category: Events
Date: 10/20/2016
Washtenaw Community College more

Washtenaw Community College

1/12/17: Client Educational Event - Successor Trustee

Client Educational Event - Successor Trustee

Category: Events
Date: 1/12/2017
Milford Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm) more

Milford Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm)

1/18/17: Smart Women, Smart Legal and Financial Choices

Smart Women, Smart Legal and Financial Choices

Category: Events
Date: 1/18/2017
Brighton Community Education (6:00 pm-8:00 pm) more

Brighton Community Education (6:00 pm-8:00 pm)

4/22/17: Community Wellness Expo

Community Wellness Expo

Category: Events
Date: 4/22/2017
Lakeland High School (10:00 am-2:00 pm) more

Lakeland High School (10:00 am-2:00 pm)

4/25/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 4/25/2017
Independence Village of White Lake (2:30 pm-3:30 pm) more

Independence Village of White Lake (2:30 pm-3:30 pm)

5/11/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 5/11/2017
Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) more

Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm)

5/16/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 5/16/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm) more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm)

5/23/17: Understanding Hospice and Funeral Planning

Understanding Hospice and Funeral Planning

Category: Events
Date: 5/23/2017
Highland Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm) more

Highland Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm)

5/25/17: I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

Category: Events
Date: 5/25/2017

Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm)

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Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm)

6/1/17: Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Category: Events
Date: 6/1/2017
Hartland Community Ed (6:30 pm-8:00 pm) CANCELLED more

Hartland Community Ed (6:30 pm-8:00 pm) CANCELLED

6/6/17: Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Category: Events
Date: 6/6/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm) CANCELLED more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm) CANCELLED

6/8/17: I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

Category: Events
Date: 6/8/2017

Independence Village of White Lake (6:30 pm-7:30 pm) - CANCELLED

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Independence Village of White Lake (6:30 pm-7:30 pm) - CANCELLED

6/20/17: Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Category: Events
Date: 6/20/2017
Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED more

Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED

7/11/17: What You Don't Know Can Hurt You – Medicaid Myths and Misinformation

What You Don't Know Can Hurt You – Medicaid Myths and Misinformation

Category: Events
Date: 7/11/2017
Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED more

Walled Lake Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED

7/14/17: Summer Picnic!

Summer Picnic!

Category: Events
Date: 7/14/2017
Huron Valley Law Center (2:00 pm-7:00 pm) more

Huron Valley Law Center (2:00 pm-7:00 pm)

7/20/17: I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

Category: Events
Date: 7/20/2017

Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm)

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Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm)

7/25/17: Plan Your Estate or the State Will!

Plan Your Estate or the State Will!

Category: Events
Date: 7/25/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm) more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm)

8/10/17: Who's Minding the Store?

Who's Minding the Store?

Category: Events
Date: 8/10/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm) more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:15 pm-8:00 pm)

8/15/17: Who's Minding the Store?

Who's Minding the Store?

Category: Events
Date: 8/15/2017
Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm) CANCELLED more

Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm) CANCELLED

8/29/17: Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Category: Events
Date: 8/29/2017
Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm) more

Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm)

9/9/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 9/9/2017
Lyon Township Public Library (1:00 pm-2:30 pm) more

Lyon Township Public Library (1:00 pm-2:30 pm)

9/12/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 9/12/2017
Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm) more

Salem-South Lyon District Library (7:00 pm-8:30 pm)

9/19/17: Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Who's the Boss? Planning for Disability, Aging and Death

Category: Events
Date: 9/19/2017
Independence Village of White Lake (6:30 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED more

Independence Village of White Lake (6:30 pm-7:30 pm) CANCELLED

10/4/17: But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

But Mom Promised! Why Good Families Go Bad

Category: Events
Date: 10/4/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm)

10/26/17: I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

Category: Events
Date: 10/26/2017

Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm)

more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm)

11/1/17: I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

I Don't Even Know Where to Start! A Survival Guide for Successor Trustees, Agents, and Executors

Category: Events
Date: 11/1/2017

Independence Village of White Lake (6:00 pm-7:15 pm)

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Independence Village of White Lake (6:00 pm-7:15 pm)

11/9/17: Plan Your Estate or the State Will!

Plan Your Estate or the State Will!

Category: Events
Date: 11/9/2017
Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm) more

Brighton Community Education Center (6:00 pm-7:30 pm)

12/8/17: Annual Holiday Party!

Annual Holiday Party!

Category: Events
Date: 12/8/2017
Huron Valley Law Center (2:00 pm-7:00 pm) more

Huron Valley Law Center (2:00 pm-7:00 pm)

2/13/18: Treat Yourself to Some Peace of Mind this Valentine's Day!

Treat Yourself to Some Peace of Mind this Valentine's Day!

Category: Events
Date: 2/13/2018
Milford Public Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm) more

Milford Public Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm)

3/20/18: What Every Caregiver Needs to Know

What Every Caregiver Needs to Know

Category: Events
Date: 3/20/2018
Highland Public Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm) more

Highland Public Library (6:00 pm-8:00 pm)
Huron Valley Law Center, PLC
2850 S. Milford Road
Highland, Michigan 48357
Phone: 248.685.8743
Email: info@huronvalleylaw.com
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