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Idaho Probate: When You Should Hire an Idaho Probate Attorney

By Lane V. Erickson, Idaho Estate Planning Attorney

In this do-it-yourself world, where many people learn how to do everything they need to do on their own, or by watching YouTube videos, the question comes up, is there a time when a family should hire a probate attorney? The short answer is yes!

Probate, and the probate process, are specific legal processes and procedures where a person’s will is recognized as legally binding by Court authority, or if there is no written will the person who passed away is deemed to be intestate. Whether there is or isn’t a written will determines what probate laws apply to the estate of the person who passed away. Additionally, these laws control who will be named as the personal representative, which is the person who is given Court authority to deal with the decedent’s estate. Furthermore, probate is the process where creditors’ claims are taken care of and where a family can receive assurance that no additional creditors’ claims will pop up in the future. Finally, probate is the process whereby distributions from the deceased person’s estate are made to the people or persons to whom they are legally required to go.

The complexity alone of the probate process is enough for most people to know that they need to hire a qualified and experienced Idaho probate lawyer to help them. Even with setting aside the complexity of the probate process, there are sometimes other really good reasons why an experienced Idaho probate attorney should be hired to help you and your family through the probate process.

As the premier Idaho probate law firm, our team at the Racine law office includes partners Randy Budge and Lane Erickson and attorneys Nate Palmer and Dave Bagley. Each attorney on our Idaho probate team has earned the highest rankings and reviews possible from past clients and from several legal rating services including Justia, Martindale & Hubbell, and AVVO. Our team of attorneys have the expertise and knowledge to benefit each of our clients specifically and individually.

If you’ve had a loved one pass away recently, and you are considering contacting a qualified Idaho probate lawyer, here are the main reasons why you should follow through and do it.

Avoid Family Members Fighting

Having been an estate planning and probate attorney for the last 20 years I can speak with authority when I say that most family fights occur because of misunderstanding. Most misunderstandings occur because of either miscommunication or no communication at all. Usually this means that some members of the family don’t understand what it is the other members of the family are doing when they are involved in the probate process. Because of the time involved, and the numerous steps that must be completed, those who are not involved misunderstand and usually think that the persons involved are deliberately delaying the probate process or are trying to cut them out of the estate.

Anytime I work with a family who has questions about probate, I try to have the entire family in the first meeting or two to discuss the probate process. I do this specifically because I want each member of the family to hear the same things from me, as an unbiased attorney. In this role I can speak with authority about the probate process and what it takes to complete the probate of a loved one after they have passed away. I’ve found that when I do this, there are far fewer family conflicts or family fights about the probate because there are fewer misunderstandings.

When a family does fight during a probate, it is expensive, it is time consuming, and it usually ruins relationships. For these reasons alone, hiring an experienced Idaho probate attorney is worth it.

Dealing With Creditors

In addition to avoiding family conflicts and fights, an experienced Idaho probate attorney can also help the family in dealing with creditors’ claims. One of the main reasons of having a probate is to allow creditors to make claims against the estate so that they can be evaluated and determined to be either valid or invalid. Most importantly, the probate process provides a cut-off for claims of creditors to be made. In other words, when the probate process is completed, a creditor can no longer knock on the door of a family member in claim that the deceased person owes them money. Rather, the probate process cuts off all of those types of claims in the future.

Again, to have peace of mind and to avoid having any creditors knocking on doors later, hiring a qualified Idaho probate attorney is worth it just to avoid having to deal with creditors later.

End the Probate Quickly and Correctly

Furthermore, when you are using a qualified and experienced Idaho probate attorney, you will know that the probate is being done correctly, and that it will end correctly. In other words, there will be no questions in your mind as to whether there are any outstanding claims, outstanding problems, distributions that still need to be made, or additional filings that should be done with the court. Rather, you will have the peace of mind knowing that the process is over, and that you can now move on.

These are just a few of the main reasons why hiring a qualified probate attorney is important. There are many more in addition to these reasons. If you have had a loved one pass away recently, we encourage you to contact us for our free probate consultation where we answer your questions and help describe and discuss the probate process with you and your family. We have helped numerous families through the probate process, and we are confident that we can help you too!

Enlist an Idaho Estate Planning Attorney to Help You

Our team of Idaho lawyers can help you with any of your estate planning or probate needs. Whether you are seeking to create or review an estate plan for yourself or would like to help a loved one, we are available to discuss your options and answer your questions at an initial free 30-minute consultation. Call us toll free at 877.232.6101 or 208.232.6101 for a free consultation. You can also email us directly at or stop by our office at 201 East Center Street, Pocatello, Idaho 83201. We will answer your questions and help you solve your Idaho Estate Planning problems.

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