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Contested estate plans may take longer

On Behalf of | Dec 4, 2020 | Probate

An estate plan may only take a few months to sort out, but it could also take years. One thing that can cause the process to drag on is when the heirs are contesting the plan or arguing over some portion of it in court.

A probate end date

If the case does wind up in court, the court may then set an end date for the probate process. However, they’re not bound by any specific rule, such as saying that every probate case needs to take just six months. It differs all the time.

For instance, say a person inherits their parents’ home. They do not want to keep it, but plan to sell it. They may wonder how long they have to do so. The answer is a bit open-ended. If it’s a contentious case, they don’t have to do anything right away. After the court sorts out the details, though, they may then establish an end date and the executor needs to sell the house by that time.

Now, it doesn’t always have to go this way. In the above example, the goal is to sell the home and divide the money as part of the probate process, while distributing assets. But siblings could also opt to keep the house as a joint asset for as long as they’d like. They can sell it at any time in the future and divide the earnings as they see fit.

Setting up a plan

If you’re doing your estate planning, it’s important to keep a close eye on these details and to learn how you can set up a comprehensive plan with little chance of conflict.