After a loved one passes away, you may suddenly face the task of administering his or her estate. If your loved one left a valid California will, this document will provide guidelines as to how the administration should carry out. A review of certain key provisions contained within this document can provide an excellent starting point for administering the estate. The following is an overview of the important provisions in a will to review.
If your loved one passed away leaving behind a will in California, it is important to look for these provisions:
- Appointment of a personal representative or executor. This is the individual who is going to be in charge of administering the estate. Consequently if the first person appointed is unavailable or unwilling to carry out these duties, there may be a backup or successor executor named in this provision, as well.
- List or description of the immediate family members of the deceased. In some cases, this may serve as your first indication as to who the beneficiaries or heirs of the estate are.
- Distribution of tangible personal property. This section refers to furniture, clothing, jewelry, and other personal property. So, the provision likely names who is to receive the property and in what proportions.
- Distribution of real estate. If the estate contains real estate, this provision may instruct that this property is to be sold or given outright to one or more beneficiaries.
- Distribution of the remaining property, which is sometimes referred to as the residuary. In addition, this includes bank accounts and other financial assets.
- Guardianship provision. Therefore If your loved one had minor children, this important section will instruct you as to who should become the guardian of the minor children.
- Powers of the personal representative. This section outlines the powers that are awarded to the person who is administering the estate. For example, these powers may give the personal representative the authority to sell real estate owned by the estate.
As you review a California will, you will ideally gain a sense as to how the overall estate administration should carry out. While these provisions are often present in all wills, there are several different types of wills to be aware. Our article, “The Four Types of Wills: Admitting a Will to Probate in California,” provides more information.
In conclusion, to learn more about beginning an estate administration and reviewing the terms of a will, contact an experienced San Diego probate administration attorney. Call The Grossman Law Firm today at (888) 443-6590.
AttorneyThe Grossman Law Firm, APC · 525 B Street, Suite 1500, San Diego, CA 92101 · (951) 523-8307