Probate and Administration
When a relative or loved one passes away he or she is called a “decedent.” If a decedent owned property at the time of his or her death it may be difficult to get it transferred to his or her heirs and a personal representative would need to be appointed by a court in the jurisdiction where he lived at the time of his or her death to enact the transfer.
If the decedent had a Will that directed the appointment of an Executor or Trustee that person can apply to the court to be appointed via a Probate proceeding, if the decedent died without a Will or if there appeared to be some issue with the will then an Administrative Proceeding should be started and the person (usually the next of kin) will be appointed as a Voluntary Administrator.
While the above may sound simple it can become very difficult to assemble the forms and obtain all of the necessary paperwork such as waivers, renunciations, posting of bonds, affidavits of heirship, family tree affidavits, and other documents that the court may require in order to issue Letters Testamentary (in the case the decedent died with a Will and the Letters Testamentary would therefore name an Executor or co-Executors) or Letters of Administration if the decedent did not have a will.
The Law Office of Barry E. Janay, P.C. routinely handles both probate and administration proceedings in New York and New Jersey including in some of the most unique and difficult situations you could imagine.