Estate Law Questions? Ask an Estate Lawyer.
Thanks for your question and good afternoon.My sympathy here for your loss of your father and dilemma .You will need to make application for heirship and for letters of administration..In Texas this is the process for a court supervised administration of his estate.Once you make application the county clerk files a notice in the court house.Once the time period has run you will need to go with your lawyer to a short hearing in front of the county judge.You will be sworn in and go over your application and the need for probate.These are all done as a group on an uncontested day.Your lawyer will check to see when the judge hears these.Unless you are at the front of the line you will be able to observe a few of these before yours is called.Once you are appointed here you will then have to file an inventory.The house and car will either then be transferred by you the personal representative to the heir(s) or sold and the proceeds done.You would pay any claims, taxes, due along the way, the personal representative/administrator is due a fee and whats left over is finally distributed here to the legal heir named by the court.The court applies the intestacy laws( now will) to determine the heirs and their shares.You are also going to have to post a bond with the court since it is court supervised.Your lawyer can help with that.Also you will need an EIN number which takes the place of his social security number since he is deceased.You can do this online once you have your letters of administration from the court.Here is what the aopplication look like..http://texasprobate.net/forms/index.htm#Determination%20of%20Heirship%20ProceedingYou can locate alocal probate lawyer here to file.http://www.texasbar.com/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Lawyer_Referral_Service_LRIS_Here is a simple chart to explain the law of intestacy.http://www.co.travis.tx.us/probate/pdfs/DnD_diagrams.pdfIt is realisitic to plan on this taking a minimum of a year from start to finish.If the house is to be sold then that is the big variable as to the time it takes to find a buyer.It has been my pleasure to assist you today.Please let me know if you have more follow up.I know that this can all be kind of overwhelming.Thanks again.
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