March 12, 2017 Lynnwood and Bellevue Probate and Estate Administration Attorneys See Jacob’s entire interview for the Masters of Estate Planning series on ReelLawyers.com Seattle-Area Probate and Estate Administration Attorneys When a resident of the state of Washington passes away, their estate must be administered and disposed of according to law. It is possible to arrange one’s affairs in a way that all assets have been disposed of before death, thus leaving no estate subject to probate. This can be accomplished through gifting, living trusts, and other means. You will not escape estate taxation, but you will avoid probate. On the other hand, probate in Washington is, in the vast majority of cases, a simple, efficient, and common-sense process. Our attorneys will be happy to advise you about these matters. Contact us for help with probate and estate administration. How Does Probating an Estate Work? When probate is required, there are two ways an estate may be administered. When an estate is small, it is sometimes possible to bypass probate by use of an affidavit. If the decedent signed a proper will, the estate will be distributed to those named in the will. If the decedent did not leave a will, then that person has died “intestate,” and the estate will be distributed in accordance with the laws of the state of Washington. In either case, the estate will go through a special probate court. At Hickman Menashe, P.S., we will review the assets of the estate with you to determine whether probate is necessary, and if so, what steps are required. Probate in Washington usually requires minimal court involvement. We will walk you through the court requirements toward a smooth and timely completion of the probate process and distribution of the estate assets. Specific services may include: Education regarding the probate process in Washington state Assessment of the estate and an outline of the necessary steps for probate or for transferring assets without probate Production and filing of the necessary court documents Direction regarding the preparation and filing of a federal estate tax return if necessary Help with disbursement of the estate assets and closing of the probate When you probate an estate with our guidance, you will find it to be a very efficient process. We will prepare all the papers and explain all the steps. Our attorneys will help you retain additional professional help, such as accountants and appraisers, when necessary. When all the decedent’s debts and taxes have been paid, we will help you to distribute the net estate to the beneficiaries and close out the proceeding. Contact Us For a private consultation with an experienced attorney, contact our office by e-mail or call us at 425-744-5658. For client convenience we have a second office in Bellevue. We offer flexible meeting times to accommodate your schedule. Home and hospital visits can be arranged, if necessary. Our offices are accessible to persons with disabilities.