How do you probate your deceased loved one's Last Will and Testament? When a loved one dies, you may not feel much like dealing with the process of dispersing his or her assets, but unfortunately, there are always loose ends that must be dealt with. An attorney is probably your best method for doing this and can relieve a lot of the pressure and stress off of you so you can be free to deal with your grief.
You should also know that even if your loved one did not have a will, an attorney can help you probate your loved one's estate. Knowing the state laws for probating an estate is essential if you attempt to do it on your own.
First, a Last Will and Testament should always be filed with the register of the county where your deceased loved one last resided. Even if the deceased did not live in the Commonwealth, it should be probated in the county where the property is located. The petition is filed with the Register of Wills. You can have an administrator assigned at the time the petition is submitted if there is not a legal will.
Validity of the Will must be proven before the probate is granted. If no one objects to a Last Will and Testament of the deceased, the will is considered to be self-proven. However, if it is not self-proved, witnesses may have to show evidence and provide testimony under oath. If the will has been contested, it will go before a judge for the decision-making.
In Pennsylvania, a Last Will and Testament does not have a time limit when it can be probated. It can be done at any time. The process can become more complicated if someone contests the will. Having an attorney provide legal advice and counsel can be beneficial when it comes to litigation of an estate.
Source: FindLaw, "Pennsylvania Probate Laws," accessed Oct. 30, 2015