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Probate and Estate Administration

Knowledgeable Probate Law Firm Settles Decedents’ Estates in the Carolinas

Attorneys serving North and South Carolina provide advice and representation for executors and administrators

If you have recently lost a loved one, you’ve no doubt heard the word probate used in relation to your loved one’s estate. Probate can refer to the court process of validating a will so an executor can implement the decedent’s wishes, or the oversight the court provides for an estate administrator who settles an intestate estate. Whether a will exists or not, the process of settling an estate can be complex, so the person who assumes those duties needs the advice of a knowledgeable probate lawyer. At Watts Law Group, our attorneys have extensive experience advising clients who act as executors and administrators. We understand people charged with these duties need sound guidance, since the law holds them personally liable for losses in the value of estate assets due to errors or misconduct. We can guide you through the complex process quickly and efficiently, so you maximize the value of the estate for your loved one’s heirs.

Probate attorneys guide you through every step of the process

Most executors have never probated a will; many are surprised to learn the decedent’s will named them as the responsible party. When there is no will, the least-reluctant close relative usually acts as personal representative of the estate, after getting court approval. In most cases, the party responsible for settling the estate has no prior experience with tasks that include:

  • Filing the will with the state probate court
  • Getting court approval as estate administrator and posting bond
  • Developing the best strategy for fairly and expeditiously settling the estate
  • Finding and assembling assets
  • Paying creditors and claimants
  • Collecting amounts owed the estate
  • Closing and opening bank accounts
  • Transferring assets from the deceased to the estate
  • Paying current and delinquent taxes as well as estate taxes
  • Valuing, managing, preserving and liquidating the estate
  • Locating beneficiaries
  • Hiring experts, when appropriate

Estate representatives can easily make mistakes due to inexperience, stress and hasty decisions. We guide clients through every step of the probate process, with reliable, detailed advice, so you can settle your loved one’s estate as efficiently, quickly and easily as possible.

Valuing assets within the estate

Our attorneys assist executors with the arduous process of collecting, valuing, protecting and liquidating the assets of the estate. Our team of experts is available to assist in every aspect of estate probate. When appropriate, the firm calls upon accountants, financial advisors, real estate agents, property managers and other professionals to assist with executor duties. We can access expert opinions about unique assets such as antiques, rare books, automobiles and other collectables for accurate valuation, management and possible sale.

Capable management of probate disputes

Even in apparently straightforward estate cases, there are sometimes disputes among beneficiaries or between certain beneficiaries and the executor/administrator. When representing the estate or the estate’s fiduciary, our attorneys demonstrate the utmost professionalism in negotiations and in the courtroom. Whether the issue is a will challenge or accusations against a fiduciary’s management of estate assets, we advocate strongly for our client’s rights.

Contact our experienced and knowledgeable probate lawyers

Watts Law Group provides probate court services throughout North and South Carolina. Call us at 910-579-6508 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.

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Our Offices
  • Shallotte Office
    4617 Main Street
    Shallotte, North Carolina 28470
    Phone: 910-579-6508
    Fax: 910-579-6510
  • Myrtle Beach Office
    4226 Mayfair Street
    Suite 204
    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina 29577
    Phone: 800-639-7671
    Fax: 910-579-6510
  • Leland Office
    2002 South Baxter Drive
    Leland, North Carolina 28451
    Phone: 800-639-7671
    Fax: 910-579-6510