Most people considering the weight loss process will be at least familiar with the term probate. Understanding how it works and how it can have an impact on your estate is a good plan for determining how you’re going to address estate planning issues in Arizona. This article is a basic overview of the process, or Probate 101.

Probate is the official Arizona process of determining that someone’s last will and testament is valid under the law. How long this process might actually take depends on several factors.  During probate, the will is submitted and this along with other documents help to determine the value and identity of the deceased person’s property. If there are issues like real estate, appraisals will need to occur, too.

The estate is responsible for the costs associated with handling probate. The executor, for example, might repay himself or herself out of the estate if an attorney has to be hired.

Probate can be a lengthy and frustrating process, especially if another person challenges the validity of the will. If you intend to pass your assets on to your beneficiaries as easily as possible, a will might not be enough. You should consider how to put together a will with your Arizona estate planning attorney to minimize the chances that it will be contested later on, but you may also want to consider additional estate planning techniques.

Many individuals find the probate process to be a big burden. After you pass away, problems and delays in probate can cause issues for your loved ones. Simply hoping that the process will move swiftly and leave your heirs with the assets you desired is rarely enough; you need to put thought and care into the steps you take to increase the chances of this happening.

While probate can and does happen across Arizona every day, it is not always the right choice for a particular estate. You may have your own plans that go beyond the basic strategies available with a will. Probate might generate challenges for your loved ones when they are already dealing with the difficulties of grieving your loss. This is why it can be beneficial to schedule a meeting with an experienced Arizona estate planning attorney to walk through your options and to get a better idea of the tools available to help your estate avoid the probate process. There may be better ways for you to accomplish your estate planning goals without the negative aspects of probate.


This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding Probate 101, or any other estate planning matters, please feel free to contact Stephen L. West at 480.461.5341,or Curtis M. Chipman at 480.461.5329. You can also log on to,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.