When someone in Texas passes away, something has to be done with one’s possessions and assets. At the same time, specific debts may need to be taken care of. The overall distribution process is known as estate management. There are three main ways in which this is going to be done.
First of all, you might decide to go with an informal probate process. To do this, you put in the paperwork, and the court then assigns someone to the job. That person will distribute things as he or she sees fit, then put in a report to be approved by the court. For these types of cases, a hearing may never become necessary.
Another option is the formal probate process. The court is more involved in this, and hearings and other court meetings may be necessary. This type of process is often going to be chosen if there are some major complications. For example, one of the deceased person’s heirs may be disputing the authenticity of the will.
Finally, there is the process of using a personal representative. This could be a family member who is actually listed in this capacity in the will. It could be another individual that the court — or the family — chooses. It could even be an institution, like a bank, in some cases. It is then that representative’s job to follow the will and distribute the assets.
If you are trying to work through a person’s will or estate and you want to make sure that it is all done properly and legally, make sure that you know all of your rights and legal options.
Source: FindLaw, “How to Administer an Estate” Nov. 03, 2014