Probate & Estate Planning Attorney In The Twin Cities

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What is Estate & Probate Law in Minnesota?

Estate and probate law refer to the legal frameworks that govern the distribution and administration of a person’s assets and property after their death. These laws vary from state to state. In Minnesota, estate and probate law are governed by the Minnesota Probate Code, which is found in Chapters 524 to 524.6 of the Minnesota Statutes. The Minnesota Probate Code establishes the rules and procedures for administering estates and handling probate matters within the state.

Key Aspects of Estate & Probate Law in Minnesota:

  1. Wills and Intestate Succession: A will is a legal document that allows individuals to specify how their assets should be distributed after their death. In Minnesota, for a will to be valid, it must be in writing, signed by the testator (the person making the will), and witnessed by at least two people. If a person dies without a valid will (intestate), Minnesota’s intestate succession laws determine how their assets will be distributed among their heirs.

  2. Probate Process: Probate in Minnesota is a court-supervised process that involves validating the will (if one exists), appointing a personal representative (executor), and overseeing the administration and distribution of the estate. The probate process generally follows these steps:

    a. Filing Petition: A petition is filed with the district court in the county where the deceased person resided at the time of their death. The court examines the will and appoints a personal representative to handle the estate.

    b. Notice to Interested Parties: Notice of the probate proceeding is provided to the heirs, beneficiaries, and creditors. Interested parties have the opportunity to raise objections or make claims against the estate.

    c. Inventory and Appraisal: The personal representative prepares an inventory of the deceased person’s assets and obtains appraisals of the assets, if necessary.

    d. Debts and Taxes: The personal representative identifies and pays the estate’s debts, taxes, and administrative expenses using estate assets.

    e. Asset Distribution: Once debts and taxes are settled, the remaining assets are distributed to the beneficiaries according to the terms of the will or the laws of intestacy.

  3. Small Estate Administration: Minnesota provides a simplified probate process for small estates. If the total value of the estate is $75,000 or less, excluding the value of the homestead, the estate may qualify for a simplified procedure called “informal probate” or “small estate administration.” This process is typically faster and less formal than regular probate.

  4. Homestead Rights: Minnesota law protects the rights of surviving spouses and children regarding the homestead property (the primary residence of the deceased person). Special provisions apply to homestead property, which may impact its distribution and sale.

  5. Non-Probate Transfers: Certain assets are not subject to probate and can be transferred directly to beneficiaries without court involvement. Examples include assets held in joint tenancy with rights of survivorship, payable-on-death (POD) accounts, and assets held in living trusts.

Why Call Walker Law Professional Corporation for Your Probate & Estate Law Needs in the Twin Cities?

It’s important to note that estate and probate laws can be complex, and the specific procedures and requirements may vary depending on the circumstances.  Walker Law Professional Corporation has the dedication and experience to handle any estate planning, estate litigation, and trust litigation legal matter in the twin cities/metro area. At Walker Law Professional Corporation, we provide zealous representation in a caring individualized manner.

Your attorney will be available to you directly and you will not be forced to call a secretary or paralegal with your questions. You will have direct access to the attorney who will be handling your case throughout your estate planning or litigation. If you have any questions your attorney will respond to your call promptly.

Free 15-Minute Telephone Consultation

Should you or a loved one have problems with an estate planning or legal issue, give Walker Law Professional Corporation a call for a free 15-minute telephone consultation with an attorney. 

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Sam Walker

(612) 289-0095

Estate planning and litigation is handled on an hourly fee basis for most clients. In the event that you require only a simple Will or Trust a flat fee may be appropriate. The following is a listing of some of the major areas of estate planning or which we provide superb representation.

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