Probate is a legal process by which the estate of a deceased person is administered. The probate process is supervised by a Court. There are four (4) main objectives of the probate process:
To create an inventory of all of the property that makes up the decedent’s estate and to determine the fair market value of each item of property, as of the date of the decedent’s death;
To enable the Executor or Administrator to get legal control of each item of property that makes up the decedent’s estate;
To pay all of the decedent’s valid debts (including his or her taxes); and
To distribute the property that remains after the payment of the decedent’s debts and taxes to his or her heirs at law (if the decedent died without a valid Will & Testament) or to those beneficiaries who are named to receive such property in the decedent’s Last Will & Testament.