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The Probate Process in Maryland: What Makes a Will Valid in Maryland, and Safekeeping Your Will with the Register of Wills
Welcome to Part 5 of our series on the probate process in Maryland. Today, we’re discussing wills and what makes them valid in the State of Maryland. In this post, we’re talking about the legal requirements in Maryland for a valid will.
This is part 4 of our series on the probate process in Maryland, brought to you by the Gormley Law Office. In this post, we’re talking about what happens if someone dies in Maryland without a will.
This is Part 3 in our series on the probate process in Maryland. Despite what you might have seen on TV or in movies about a dramatic “reading of the will” after someone dies, you might be surprised to learn that a will only governs probate assets.
Welcome back to Part 2 of our series on probate in Maryland! In our previous post, we talked about the unique history of probate in Maryland and the responsibilities of the Orphans’ Court and the Register of Wills. In today’s post, we’re talking about terminology of the probate process.
Welcome to the first in our series of blog posts about the probate process in Maryland, brought to you by the Gormley Law Firm! In this post, we’re talking about the basics of probate in Maryland. You might be surprised to learn that Maryland’s probate process has some unique aspects to it.
This is the last post in our probate series in Washington DC! If you’ve missed any previous articles, check our index to all the posts, where you’ll find articles on everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the probate process in Washington, DC. In this post, we’ll explain to you how you can follow your case, or any case, by checking the docket online.
In this post, we’re talking about electronic filing and how to view the status of your case online. The Probate Division began mandatory e-filing in November 2013. The rule requires all documents submitted in Probate Division cases are to be eFiled by mandatory eFilers and by parties who are not mandatory eFilers but chose to register in a particular case for eFiling.
We’re almost to the end of our series on probate in Washington, DC! In this post, we’re talking about major estate litigation, timelines and other requirements. We suggest you read our previous articles on probate – they are a wealth of information that may come in handy should you need to deal with a probate matter – and you can see all the posts in our series on the index page for all the posts.
Whether you’re just interested in learning, or you are looking for information on probate because you need help, the Gormley Law Office is pleased to share this information. We are a full-service law firm in Kensington, Maryland specializing in trusts, estate litigation and probate matters in Washington, DC.
A revocable trust allows the grantor to modify the trust but it cannot be revoked after death. The trust is subject to claims after the settlor’s death to the extent the estate outside of the trust doesn’t cover things like creditor claims, costs of administration of the settlor’s estate, the expenses of the deceased settlor’s funeral and disposal of remains, and statutory allowances to a surviving spouse and children.
A Notice of Revocable Trust proceeding is opened to notify interested persons and creditors that a deceased person established a trust prior to death that became irrevocable upon death. A revocable trust allows the grantor to modify the trust. An irrevocable trust can’t be modified or terminated without the beneficiary’s permission.
A trust is created when property is held by one person or entity for the benefit of another or others. Trusts are used for estate planning, and they allow you to place specific conditions/restrictions on how and when your assets are distributed after your death, reduce the amount you pay in estate and gift taxes, and distribute assets to heirs without cost, delay and filing in the probate court. We’ll talk more about trusts in a future series of articles.
Guardianships of minor estates are used to protect the assets of minor children. They are opened for children under the age of 18 who live in the District of Columbia and who are entitled to receive assets. A guardian of a minor’s estate is responsible for managing and safeguarding the minor’s property until the minor becomes 18 and is different from a guardian/custodian appointed by the Family Court to manage a minor’s personal affairs (e.g., placement, education, health care). Guardianships of minor’s estates cases are governed by D.C. Code, sec. 21-101 et seq.
A foreign intervention case is opened when a guardian or conservator of an incapacitated adult who has been appointed by another jurisdiction needs authority to transact business or make health care decisions in the District of Columbia and (1) a guardian or conservator has not been appointed in the District of Columbia and (2) a petition for a protective proceeding is not pending in the District of Columbia.
In this post, we’re talking about the four types of petitions that may be used in these types of cases. Each petition is used for a different situation.
You might be less familiar with the other types of cases handled in probate practice. These cases are called “intervention” proceedings, and include conservatorship and guardianship. These two types of proceedings are filed when a friend, family member or any other interested person is concerned about the welfare of a person and files a petition to become conservator or guardian of a person who may be unable to care for themselves in some way, usually their finances and health.
Although you can technically represent yourself in a legal arbitration process, it is not advisable. If more is at stake than what a lawyer will cost you, and you are able to afford a lawyer, making the choice to retain legal representation may be a very smart decision. An arbitration lawyer will allow you to avoid a steep learning curve about the actual process, the topic of the dispute, and other important elements.
A disclaimer is essentially a way for someone who doesn’t want to accept property from a decedent to allow it to pass to someone else. There are plenty of reasons why someone would want to disclaim. For example, if a house is in bad condition and the beneficiary doesn’t want to take on the responsibility or cost to repair it, he/she could disclaim it and allow another beneficiary to deal with it. Or, a beneficiary may feel that a family heirloom would be better appreciated by another family member, he/she could disclaim the interest in the heirloom.
By now, you know all about small estate proceedings, large estate proceedings, foreign estates, and in this post we’re talking about will cases. These cases aren’t really proceedings – but if there is a will, it must be filed with the Probate Division before or at the same time as the estate proceeding is opened.
Our previous post covered foreign estates and when to use them. In this post, we’re discussing the mechanics of how to open a foreign estate case. The process for opening a foreign estate case in Washington DC requires that the personal representative of the foreign estate file the following documents:
We know that probate can be a dry, boring subject, but it’s good to have a basic working knowledge of the process before you need to navigate it. The Gormley Law firm is pleased to bring you this information, and don’t forget: we’re here to help! If you have a probate matter, give us a call at 1.240.514.2358 or use the Contact Us feature below!
We know that probate can be a dry, boring subject, but it’s good to have a basic working knowledge of the process before you need to navigate it. Petitions to open large estates are filed at the Probate Division’s Legal Branch. An Assistant Deputy Register of Wills looks over your petition to ensure that all of the necessary documents have been submitted and that the filings comply with minimum legal requirements.
In this post, we’re looking at the filing fees for large estate proceedings. Filing fees are governed by Probate Division Rules 125 and 425 . The information below is current as of May 2018, and you can check the links for the current information on filing fees. In general, there is a $25.00 fee if there is real estate owned by the decedent in the District of Columbia, plus an additional fee depending on the value of all other assets/personal property:
Previously, we told you about filing an abbreviated probate petition in the Probate Division. In this post, we’re discussing Standard Probate petitions and how they are different than abbreviated probate.
If you’ve determined that you must file a large estate case in the Probate Division, you’ll next need to determine which petition to file. There are two: abbreviated and standard. The petition you use depends on the party filing for appointment as personal representative.
In this post, we’re talking about Large Estate Proceedings. In part 5, we covered small estate proceedings, so if you missed it, go here, or check out this index to our entire probate series to skip to the part you are interested in. It’s true, probate can be a dry subject. No one likes to talk about death, and there is frequently drama between family members when someone dies. We often hear dramatic stories when the person who dies has a lot of money, and that’s usually when a large estate proceeding is opened.
Part 5 of Our Probate Series in Washington, DC: Documents Needed to Open a Small Estate Proceeding in the Probate Division
In this post, we’re demystifying the probate process for you with a list of documents you need to open a small estate probate proceeding in Washington, DC. Remember: a small estate proceeding is for a person who lived in the District of Columbia, died after April 26, 2001, and had assets having a total value of $40,000.00 or less in his or her sole name and/or real estate only in another jurisdiction.
Part 4 of Our Probate Series in Washington, DC: How to Open a Small Estate Proceeding in the Probate Division
In this post, we’re ready to delve into the details of how to open a small estate proceeding. Remember that small estates are opened for a person domiciled in the District of Columbia who died after April 26, 2001, with assets having a total value of $40,000.00 or less in his or her sole name and/or real estate only in another jurisdiction.
In this post, we’re talking about the case types that are overseen by the Probate Division. In Part 2, we talked about small estate proceedings and large estate proceedings. In this post, we’re discussing the other three types of cases: Wills, Disclaimers and Foreign Estate Proceedings.
Part 2 of Our Probate Series in Washington, DC: The Types of Cases Handled by the Probate Division of the Superior Court in Washington, DC
This is Part 2 of our probate series on the probate process in Washington, DC. If you haven’t already read Part 1, check it out for some basic terminology and understanding of what probate is. In today’s Part 2, we’re talking about the Probate Division of the Superior Court of Washington, DC. The Probate Division…
When you think about probate, what comes to mind? If you’re like most people, the term “probate” probably makes you think about a long, expensive process that happens after someone dies. You’ve perhaps seen movies or even real-life headlines about salacious stories that happen all as a result of someone dying or preparing to die.
Probate refers to a court-supervised process whereby all the assets of the deceased person are gathered and taxes and debts are paid, with the remainder distributed to heirs. Court supervision is only necessary when family members, relatives, or creditors are hostile over the remaining estate. In this article, we will take a look at the various steps involved in the probate process.
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