We can help you save money on probate in all Alabama counties

Answers to Common Alabama Probate Questions

When is Alabama probate required?  Do I need probate?

So when is Alabama probate required?  The deciding factor is whether the decedent owned any assets in his or her name alone.  If so, and if the assets can’t be disposed of through an alternative to probate, chances are that probate will be required.  Our Alabama probate attorney will go over the need for probate in the free initial consultation.

Do you handle probates in __________ county?

Whatever the county, the answer is yes.  As long as the estate is uncontested, we can help.

How long does an Alabama probate proceeding take?

The time it takes to administer an estate in Alabama will vary depending on the complexity of the estate and the diligence of the personal representative.  But since the estate must remain open for six months to allow creditors to submit claims, it is not possible to close the estate in less than six months.  For simple estates, seven to nine months is a reasonable estimate.

How much does an Alabama probate proceeding cost?

The costs of probate vary greatly depending on the work involved.  Some estates can drag on for years and involve complicated tax and family issues; others can be resolved in several months.  Due to this variation, it is impossible to give a cost estimate without knowing at least basic information about the estate.  We gather this information in our free initial consultation and provide an up-front fee quote in accordance with our value pricing system.  In almost all cases, fees are paid from the assets of the estate.

Am I entitled to a fee for serving as personal representative?

Yes.  An Alabama personal representative is entitled to reasonable compensation for services rendered in connection with the estate.  Compensation must be fair in light of how difficult the estate is to administer, how much skill would be required to administer the estate, fees customarily paid for similar services, how promptly and diligently the personal representative discharges his or her duties, and related considerations.  There is a cap of 2.5 percent of the value of all property received by the personal representative and 2.5 percent of all disbursements.  The court can also approve additional compensation for extraordinary services.

I live out-of-state.  Will I need to travel to Alabama to handle the estate?

Probably not.  In most situations, you can be represented in court by your attorney at any hearings that are required.  But it is important to be sure that you are named in the decedent’s Last Will and Testament.  If there is no Last Will and Testament, an Alabama resident must be appointed as personal representative.

How long do I have to probate the will in Alabama?

To be effective, the will must be probated within five years of the date of the decedent’s death.  But if the will was admitted to probate in another state within five years of the decedent’s death, the will can still be admitted in Alabama, even if more than five years have passed.