The emotional trauma brought on by the death of a close family member is often accompanied by bewilderment about the financial and legal steps the survivors must take. These steps may inconveniently come on top of commitments to family and work that can’t be set aside.
Probate, also known as estate administration, is the process that occurs after a person dies and prior to his or her assets being distributed. In North Carolina, estate administration is governed by the North Carolina General Statutes as well as the rules of the Clerk of Superior Court in the county of the decedent’s residence. Administrators are responsible for being aware of these laws and rules and are charged with following them. Getting support from an attorney with estate administration experience allows the process to be implemented smoothly and efficiently.
This listing includes the first few steps a surviving family member may want to take. These responsibilities may ultimately fall on whoever is appointed executor or administrator. Note that matters can be a bit complicated in the absence of a will, because it may not be clear who legally has the responsibility of carrying out these steps. [Read more…]