Haines Law is dedicated to providing exceptional probate administration, estate planning, and related probate services in Houston, TX. Losing a loved one is never easy. With Haines Law attorneys working on your behalf, the process can be less stressful. You can be confident that your family is being served in the best way possible.
Haines Law, a probate attorney in Houston TX, and the surrounding communities of Humble, League City, Crosby, New Caney, Clear Lake, Kingwood, and Pasadena TX, provides help with drafting wills, financial and medical powers of attorney, transfer on death deeds, and probate administration.
Haines Law started as a Personal Injury Law Firm in 2009. Our introduction to probate came shortly thereafter during our representation of a surviving family in a wrongful death case. That case involved the untimely death of a pedestrian who was hit by a truck while crossing a street. The victim left behind a wife and several children. He was relatively young and healthy. He did not leave a will. So, the administration of his estate was extremely complicated. We were able to successfully resolve the probate issues and ended up securing a substantial settlement for the surviving family members. But, this crossover between personal injury law and probate law in the midst of a real-life tragedy left us with a strong desire to offer affordable wills and probate services in our local community.
Led by attorneys Davis Haines and Megan Carter Hartman, Haines Law works with clients to ensure that their assets are protected and passed on to surviving heirs according to the clients’ last wishes. Leaving a will prevents unnecessary hardship on surviving heirs and family at what is likely one of the worst times of their life.
Having a will reflecting your desire to distribute your assets in a specific manner is only half of the process. When one dies with a will, the will typically needs to pass through the probate process. This process involves ensuring that the named executor of the will is appointed by the Probate Court to serve as the executor of the will. Once the executor is appointed, they may also require some guidance from an attorney regarding the rights and responsibilities of the executor. Haines Law can help throughout this probate process.
With preparation and estate planning, Haines Law can simplify the probate process by working with clients on wills and trusts before a passing occurs. Estate planning is a best practice for individuals and families as it keeps probate costs and worries to a minimum.
Probate practice with Haines Law extends to uncontested wills that need to be processed through the legal system so that heirs can receive their inheritance, deal with creditors, access bank accounts and investment accounts. Not every will needs to go through probate, but most do. Any inheritance involving real property or titled property will require probate. Haines Law can walk you through the probate process whether we drafted your loved one’s will or not. There is no requirement that a will be probated by the same lawyer who drafted the will. As an executor or surviving family member, you are free to choose any qualified lawyer to probate a will.
What is Probate?
Probate encompasses how an estate is processed after the loss of life; it can also refer to the act of presenting a will for processing in court. Probate is described as the method for how an estate needs to be handled: a list of instructions prepared ahead of time regarding how a person’s wishes can be honored after they are gone.
A Probate Attorney in Houston
Haines Law provides compassionate legal services in Houston, TX, placing the client and the client’s family first. Family relationships can be strained with the passing of a family member. When someone dies without a will, the legal process can get particularly messy causing additional strife within the family. Having a will in place and having excellent, local legal representation can ease any such tensions that may come to the surface during the probate process.
Once parents begin to age, they may be open to having estate planning in place or they may resist the planning process. Haines Law works with you to facilitate the process by providing education, information, and helping your family be aware of the rights and “what if” situations that happen at times unexpectedly. Haines Law makes obtaining a will quick, easy, and affordable.
You might be wondering if probate is needed for your family’s estate planning. It’s especially helpful if there are properties owned, deeds, title, or real estate that needs to change hands after a loved one passes. Other possessions like automobiles and jewelry may also be included in the estate planning. The law states that once a person loses his or her life, he or she can no longer hold title to a property. This may seem obvious, but what it translates to is that estate planning should be in place so that you can focus on what matters most and let Haines Law help you through the steps so you are prepared for a smooth transition.
Planning Ahead in the Event of a Catastrophic Accident
It may not always be enjoyable to plan for a car accident or a major catastrophe that results in the loss of life. Accidents by their nature are not easily predicted, so it is better to be safe and take precautions ahead of time with estate planning. When you set up probate plans with Haines Law, you will have the opportunity to spell out how your home and property will be taken care of after you are gone.
Probate applies with or without a will. The probate process will be simplified with the help of an attorney representing your interests. One step you will need to think about is naming an executor or set of executors. For instance, if you have two grown children, you can name them co-executors. If you don’t have family, you may wish to name a trusted person to be your executor. An executor doesn’t necessarily have to be in line to inherit from the probate process. It should be someone you trust who can follow the instructions of probate with your attorney and heirs as well.
Houston, Texas Probate Planning
When you are planning for probate in Houston, call on Haines Law to help you get organized and put a plan into writing. It isn’t always easy to think about. In cases where an aging parent or relative is showing signs of being near the end, it is vital to put together an estate plan. However, even young families, when they own property and possessions, can benefit from putting together a plan for their home or property in the event of surprise situations, accidents, or unexpected losses.
These are a few steps you can take to prepare for a meeting with a Houston probate attorney. First, take time to catalog the assets that will be handled in the probate process. Define properties with addresses, paperwork, and copies of the title or deeds. Next, be sure to identify beneficiaries clearly. It will be the executor’s job to notify people who will be the heirs of the estate. Haines Law can assist with the steps of preparing probate paperwork; documenting your wishes in legal paperwork that will assist in the processing of the estate in the event of death. Once all the paperwork is in place, you can rest easier knowing you have the estate in order. Be sure to make updates in the event of purchasing new properties or real estate so that it stays up-to-date over time.
Contact Haines Law today for a complimentary consultation, no strings attached.