What Happens to My Will When I Die?

When someone dies, the original of that person’s Will must be deposited with the Probate Court.   The Will becomes a public record and anyone can ask to read it.

If all of the deceased person’s property is in a Trust, or already has a legal beneficiary named (such as life insurance), then the Will just gets deposited and nothing more happens in the court system.

Otherwise, a “probate administration” must be started, which means that the Probate Court will decide if the Will is legal, then appoint someone to be in charge of gathering the property, paying the deceased person’s debts, and distributing the remaining property to the right people. This person is usually called the “Executor.”

About Helene P. Dreyer Koch

Estate Planning Attorney (Wills, Trusts, Probate) Indian Wells, California * 760.360.2400
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