Easy Steps to Bypass Probate

by: Attorney Noyes

4/1/20241 min read

As an attorney at Noyes & Associates specializing in elder law, I often encounter clients concerned about the probate process. Probate can be time-consuming and costly, but fortunately, there are strategies to avoid it. Here’s how you can simplify your estate planning and keep your assets out of probate court.

1. Joint Ownership: One of the simplest ways to avoid probate is through joint ownership of property and accounts. When one owner passes away, the surviving owner automatically assumes full ownership, bypassing probate entirely.

2. Beneficiary Designations: Financial products like retirement accounts and life insurance policies allow you to name beneficiaries. Upon your passing, these assets transfer directly to the named individuals, avoiding probate.

3. Revocable Living Trust: Creating a trust allows you to manage your assets while you’re alive and dictate their distribution after your death. Assets in a trust bypass probate, ensuring a smoother transition for your heirs.

4. Gift Assets During Your Lifetime: You can reduce your probate estate by gifting assets while you’re alive. This not only helps your loved ones but also decreases the value of your estate that might go through probate.

5. Payable-on-Death Accounts: Many financial institutions allow you to designate accounts as payable-on-death (POD). This means the account’s contents will go directly to your named beneficiary upon your death.

Avoiding probate is about planning and utilizing the legal tools available to ensure your assets are distributed according to your wishes, without court intervention. It’s crucial to approach this with careful consideration and the guidance of a knowledgeable attorney.

At Noyes & Associates, we understand the complexities of probate law and are 

dedicated to helping you navigate your estate planning smoothly. If you wish to discuss how to protect your assets and ensure they pass to your loved ones seamlessly, contact us today. We are here to provide you with the support and expertise you need to make informed decisions about your estate.