A guide to administering an estate in Florida.
Has a loved one recently passed away and you don't know where to start?
Survivors who are struggling with the emotional distress of their loss frequently find themselves faced with the seemingly overwhelming task of settling the estate.
What procedures are necessary to transfer the assets to the heirs? How do I deal with medical bills and other creditors? How can I get into the safe deposit box?
And it seems that each new day gives rise to newer and more difficult questions: Will I need to go through Florida probate? Do I need to contact an attorney? Will I have to sell my home to pay the medical bills?
Administering an estate in Florida can be a very complicated, time consuming and expensive process. However, in other circumstances, it can be a simple matter.
This site will help you answer these questions and organize the steps you will need to take during this difficult time. Our Survivor's Checklist outlines the immediate steps you should use to begin.
You can also review summaries of the different types of administration available in Florida, from Summary Administration to Formal Probate. My blog addresses Florida probate and administration issues and is designed to be a resource for attorneys and individuals.
I also provide contact information if you have questions or need to consult with a Florida probate attorney. Probate is a complex matter and there is no substitute for competent legal advice.
DO YOU HAVE TO DEAL WITH A NON-RESIDENT DECEDENT'S FLORIDA REAL ESTATE?
For many, Florida is a part-time seasonal home. They purchased a house or condominium to serve as their winter home but, for various reasons, did not become a Florida resident. At their death, the property must be distributed to their heirs. Since the executor appointed in the decedent's home state has no authority in Florida, some type of Florida administration will be needed. The Non-Resident Estate section will help you determine what type to use and how to get started. And you or your attorney is urged to contact me for additional assistance.
HAVE YOU JUST BEEN THROUGH THE PROBATE PROCESS AND WANT TO MAKE SURE YOUR CHILDREN DON'T HAVE TO SUFFER THE SAME ORDEAL?
Click our Avoiding Probate section. It provides simple ways to avoid probate in Florida. Even if you and a spouse owned property jointly and it passed to you without any problems, you are now the sole owner. And that could mean probate at your death. There are many strategies you can set up to avoid the need for Florida probate.
DO YOU WANT TO LEAVE A LEGACY THAT WILL POSITIVELY IMPACT YOUR FAMILY AND COMMUNITY FOR GENERATIONS TO COME?
There is more to leave behind than just money and property. In the traditional sense, most people think of wealth solely as the tangible assets a person has acquired during his or her lifetime. However, the stark reality is that most people hope to pass on much more than money and property. They wish to pass on their legacy.
Think about it. Your life is much more than the accumulation of assets. Your life is a unique tapestry of experiences. It is your core beliefs, your values, accomplishments and lessons learned. Visit our Leave A Legacy section to see how you can leave a legacy to your family through a Legacy Statement and to your community through charitable giving.
My name is Dean Hanewinckel and, as an attorney, I've helped my clients with probate, estate planning and real estate issues in Florida for more than 30 years. During that time, I've developed methods to help you administer a loved one's estate in the most efficient, least painful manner. I can also advise you on strategies to make sure your family doesn't have to endure the hardship of the probate process after you are gone. Read the articles and look through the blog posts. The information you find could be the key to answering your questions and addressing your needs. If you can't find the answer to your question, contact me for more information.
BOOKS BY DEAN HANEWINCKEL
The information contained in this website is provided only as general information for education purposes and is not intended to provide specific legal advice. No representation is made about the accuracy of the information posted on this website. Blog topics may or may not be updated and entries may be out-of-date at the time you view them.
By using this website you understand that there is no attorney-client relationship between Dean Hanewinckel or the Law Offices of Dean Hanewinckel, P.A. and you. The information contained within this site, including but not limited to the blog site, is neither provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship nor intended to constitute legal advice. This website should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your state.
Although sample clauses for wills and trusts may be provided and discussed in this blog, no form clause is a substitute for informed legal judgment. Dean Hanewinckel does not guarantee that the sample clauses discussed on this website or in the blog effectively accomplish any purpose, and he assumes no responsibility for the text of the sample clauses cited herein or their uses. By using any of the sample will or trust clauses discussed in this blog, the user acknowledges that such person (and not Dean Hanewinckel or his law firm) is responsible for any document that such person prepares based on such language.