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Cherry Hill Probate Lawyer

Have Questions About Probate in South Jersey? Our Cherry Hill Attorneys Can Help

At Scott Counsel, P.C., our Cherry Hill probate lawyers provide comprehensive, solutions-driven legal guidance and support to people and families in South Jersey. Whether you are trying to find ways to avoid probate or you are getting ready to navigate the process, professional support is available. If you have any questions about probate in the Cherry Hill area, we can help. For a fully confidential consultation with a top New Jersey probate lawyer, please call us at (856) 925-7281

Probate stamp on a big folder of paperwork
The word probate on a stamp on a big folder of paperwork

Your Guide to the Probate Process and Probate Laws in New Jersey

Overseen by a court, probate is the name for the legal process through which a deceased person’s estate is settled and their assets are distributed. Unfortunately, probate can be a confusing, even frustrating process. Our Cherry Hill probate lawyers help people navigate the system—ensuring that their legal rights and financial interests are protected every step of the way. Here are six of the most important things to understand about the probate process and probate laws in New Jersey: 

  • The Executor or a Personal Representative Should Open Probate: In general, probate is “opened” in New Jersey by the executor (as named in the will) or by a personal representative of the deceased. The individual who initiates probate should submit the will to the proper county court. As part of probate in New Jersey, the court must validate the will. If there is no will, probate may still be necessary. The process will proceed under New Jersey’s intestacy laws. 
  • Small Estate Many Be Eligible for a Simplified Process: Not all estates are required to go through formal probate procedures in New Jersey. As probate has the potential to be a lengthy and complicated process, New Jersey has a simplified system in place for small estates. Under New Jersey law (NJ Rev Stat § 3B:10-3), you can use the simplified probate process if the value of the estate is less than $20,000 and it is all going to a single heir.
  • Proper Notice Must Be Sent to All Implicated Parties: If formal probate is required, then the executor/personal representative will be responsible for sending proper legal notice to all interested parties. Key parties that should be notified that probate is starting in Camden County include all potential heirs of the deceased and any creditor that has a potential claim against the estate. If you have any questions about notification requirements in New Jersey, our Cherry Hill probate law attorneys can help. 
  • A Comprehensive Inventory Will Should Be Taken: The executor/personal representative of the estate is also responsible for taking a comprehensive inventory. In effect, they have a duty to identify and gather all of the property, assets, and liabilities that are part of the estate. Only when all of the property is organized will the probate process move forward. 
  • There are Often Probate and Non-Probate Assets: To be clear, not all property and assets held by a deceased person are subject to probate. There are often both probate assets and non-probate assets within an estate. In New Jersey, assets placed within a legally valid trust are not passed through probate. They can go directly to heirs—skipping the probate process. Likewise, accounts with a valid beneficiary designation can generally skip probate. As an example, imagine that your parents had funds within a tax-advantaged retirement account. If that account designated you as a beneficiary, then those assets can generally pass to you outside of probate. 
  • Assets Can Only Be Distributed Once Claims are Resolved: All property and assets that go through probate in New Jersey will only be distributed to the proper heirs once the estate has been finalized. Among other things, this means that any outstanding claims against the estate—debts, bills, taxes, etc.—must be resolved. Dealing with creditor claims can be one of the most complicated aspects of the probate process.

A Note on Probate in Pennsylvania: Probate cases are handled on a state-by-state basis. If you are probating a will in Southeastern Pennsylvania, your case will be heard by the appropriate county court (Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Delaware County, etc). While the probate laws in New Jersey and Pennsylvania are similar, there are also some key differences. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our Pennsylvania probate law attorneys for help. 

You Can Rely On the Cherry Hill Probate Attorneys at Scott Counsel, P.C.

Probate can be a confusing, even mystifying process. At Scott Counsel, P.C., our law firm helps people navigate all aspects of the probate process in New Jersey—from advanced strategies to avoid probate to handling disputes within probate court. No matter your circumstances, we can help. Our 

Cherry Hill probate lawyers are prepared to:

  • Conduct a comprehensive, confidential review of your case;
  • Explain your rights/responsibilities and answer questions about probate; 
  • Gather the documents, records, and information you need to move forward; and
  • Take whatever action is needed to help you most effectively achieve your goals. 

We are proud to provide personalized probate law representation to clients in South Jersey. Our Cherry Hill probate lawyers will put forward the time, legal resources, and attention to the small details to handle your case the right way. We encourage you to hear what our former clients have to say and to reach out to us directly with any specific questions about probate.

Get Help From Our Cherry Hill Probate Lawyers Today

At Scott Counsel, P.C., our Cherry Hill probate law attorneys are standing by, ready to protect the best interests of you and your family. Probate does not have to be mystifying. Our legal team can provide clarity. If you have questions about probate, we are here to get you answers. Contact us at (856) 925-7281 to schedule your confidential initial consultation. With our main office in Cherry Hill, we provide probate law representation throughout South Jersey, including in Camden County, Gloucester County, Burlington County, and Atlantic County.

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