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Probate serves an important need to facilitate the transfer of assets at death. So what exactly is probate? Put simply, probate is a process whereby the courts oversee the settlement of debts and the distribution of assets according to the provisions of the decedent’s will, or lack thereof. As the probate estate is made up principally of assets titled in the decedent’s name alone it does not involve assets that pass to a beneficiary by contract such as life insurance proceeds or retirement assets that pass to a surviving joint tenant by right of survivorship, such as a residence which is owned in joint names.

Larsen & Risley’s probate practice includes representation of Executors and Trustees in the administration of decedents’ estates and trust assets, as well as advising any parties in connection with litigation for the purpose of contesting wills or trusts.