While grieving the loss of a family member, close friend, or loved one, the last thing one wants to do is deal with the court system in order to distribute their assets. However, Florida law requires that a decedent’s estate go through probate so that their assets may be properly distributed. Unfortunately, in some cases conflict may arise when assets in your loved one’s estate are being improperly distributed by other parties. If you sense there is an issue with how assets are being distributed, in it is in your best interest to contact a Florida probate attorney.
You have a right to object—
It is important to understand that you do have a right to object to probate proceedings regarding the distribution of your loved one’s estate. The purpose of the probate process is to handle any objections to the various stages of the distribution process before the estate can be fully administered and closed. If you have a valid basis for objecting to the distribution process, you are within your rights to do so.
Common reasons for objecting to probate proceedings include:
- The personal representative is mismanaging the assets of the estate;
- You object payment of a specific creditor’s claim filed against the estate;
- You object to the appointment of the proposed personal representative; or
- You object to the validity of the estate planning documents.
How to make your objection—
Prior to making any objection, it is crucial to speak to an attorney who is familiar with Florida Probate law. An experienced probate attorney will identify any valid claims you have to object to probate proceedings and will help you build the strongest case possible. Before your objection is heard by the court, you will need to file a petition outlining the basis of your objection. There are several procedural rules which must be followed for the court to accept your claim. Rather than figuring out what procedures you must follow to bring your objection forward, it is better to consult with an attorney.
It is also important to note that there can be time limits for certain types of objections and it’s important to consult with an attorney to ensure you have not missed your opportunity to make your objection.
Objecting to Creditor Claims—
The probate process requires that the personal representative send notice to any of the decedent’s creditors who may have potential claims of a debt the decedent owed them. Either the personal representative, or any other interested person, can object to creditor claims. For example, if you are a beneficiary to an estate but are not the appointed personal representative, you could object to a creditor’s claim even if the personal representative does not.
Speak with a Florida Probate Attorney…
As attorneys who focus on the Florida Probate process, we understand grieving the loss of a loved one is never easy, especially while having to deal with the probate court system. Our team is dedicated to identifying and understanding your issue and seeing that your loved one’s assets are distributed properly. We are equipped with the knowledge and skill to help you build the strongest possible claim and yield the best results for your circumstances. If you have any questions concerning objecting to probate administration, or regarding the probate process in general, we invite you to contact The Florida Estate Planning Law Firm, by e-mail, at Info@FLEPLaw.com, or by calling our office at 305-384-3386.