Huntsville, AL

Probate & Estate Administration Attorney

Understandably, people often overlook Wills, Probate, and Estate Planning matters for a variety of reasons, particularly when you consider just how complicated the law is in this area. Mr. McCartha has even heard attorneys say they avoid Probate wherever and whenever they can!  Nonetheless, we, at McCartha Law, can provide you meaningful counsel and real value with our Wills and Probate consultations, representation, and legal documents. We have seen statics that have indicated that an estimated 74% of Americans within critical ages do not have a Will in place, but we can help you remedy this and so much more…often more simply and understandably than you thought possible. Let us help you.

WHAT IS PROBATE?  Probate is both the process and court where estates are “regulated” by law (and if there is a Will by THE Will also) before the estate can legitimately pass to the heirs or designated beneficiaries (those who receive the estate).  

WHAT IS AN ESTATE?  An Estate is generally defined and primarily means all the money and property you own —particularly upon a person’s ultimate demise.

When dealing with any type of Will, Probate, or Estate Administration matter in Huntsville or North Alabama, know that McCartha Law has you covered. We offer comprehensive legal services that partner with you to establish an effective plan that protects your interests and overcomes, to the extent possible, the Probate maze.

Probate of Testate Estates (this means you have Will to Probate)

When Probating an estate with a Will we generally need to have and understand the following issues to begin your case:

  • The Original Will;
  • Death Certificate;
  • Next of Kin (name, address, DOB)
  • What is a Probate asset and what is not (we take a great deal of time here to explain this issue to you so that we can reduce the time, energy, and cost to the beneficiaries (beneficiaries are those who receive a part of the estate);
  • We often assist you in obtaining an EIN number and opening an Estate Bank Account particularly if you are the Personal Representative/Executor (I generally call this person the CEO of the Estate);
  • Who the Creditors are (once again we take significant pains to assist you in this area to reduce, to the extent the law will allow, creditor claims, and we can negotiate (or otherwise) reduce or eliminate altogether what is owed to creditors);

Probate of Intestate Estates (this means you have no Will to Probate)

As a Huntsville estate administration attorney we apply what we know of the law for your benefit

INTESTATE (No Will) – Probate Administration:  Often in Alabama, individuals who do not have a will in place can expect their estate to enter probate upon their death. This places the estate and other assets under complex laws and regulations, which is why you need a Huntsville estate administration attorney on your side. At McCartha Law we are well-versed in matters relating to probate and probate administration, and can guide you towards a resolution that best fits your needs.

When Probating an estate without a Will we generally need to have and understand the following issues to begin your case:

  • Death Certificate;
  • Next of Kin (name, address, DOB)
  • What is a Probate asset and what is not (we take a great deal of time here to explain this issue to you so that we can reduce the time, energy, and cost to the beneficiaries (beneficiaries are those who receive a part of the estate);
  • We often assist you in obtaining an EIN number and opening an Estate Bank Account particularly if you are the Personal Representative/Administrator (I generally call this person the CEO of the Estate);
  • Who the Creditors are (once again we take significant pains to assist you in this area to reduce, to the extent the law will allow, creditor claims, and we can negotiate (or otherwise) reduce or eliminate altogether what is owed to creditors);

We discussed this section in our “Why you need a Will” section of this website, but want to include it here also for your ease of use.  “Intestate” (i.e. without a Will) Alabama law says in part that if you don’t have a Will then your estate (estate-primarily means all the money and property you own) will pass as follows:

  1. If the decedent (the person who passed away) is survived by a spouse, the following rules apply:
    1. If the decedent did NOT leave parents or children, the spouse gets everything.
    2. If the decedent was survived by parents but not by children, the spouse gets $100,000 and half (1/2) of the balance of the decedent’s estate.  The decedent’s parents get the remaining half.
    3. If the decedent had children who are also children of the surviving spouse (all the children belong to you and your spouse), the surviving spouse gets $50,000 and one half (1/2) of the balance of the decedent’s estate.  The surviving children share the other half of the balance.
    4. If the decedent had living children that are not the children of the surviving spouse, the surviving spouse gets one half (1/2) of the estate and the decedent’s children get the remaining half.
  2. If the decedent is not survived by a spouse, the estate passes to decedent’s heirs at law in the following order of priority:
    1. Children and their descendants;
    2. Parents;
    3. Brothers and sisters, or, if all are deceased, nieces and nephews;
    4. Grandparents, aunts, and uncles or, if all are deceased, to their descendants; and
    5. The State of Alabama.

Remember, from our Wills, Trust, and Estates section, there are often ways we can help you to avoid Probate, including establishing living trusts, contracts, deeds, and more.  At McCartha Law we help our clients establish comprehensive estate plans by looking into these issues that often avoid probate somewhat or in extremely good cases altogether and/or that protect their interests to the furthest extent allowed by law.

Contact A Qualified Huntsville Wills, Probate & Estates Attorney

Do not take any chances when it comes to probate and estate planning matters in Alabama. To speak to a reputable Huntsville estate administration attorney, be sure to call us at the McCartha Law Firm, LLC as soon as possible to schedule a consultation.

Contact Us Today at 256-270-4233