The loss of a loved one in Florida can understandably be difficult to cope with emotionally. However, it can be just as challenging financially, as the deceased loved one’s estate must be distributed. This legal process is known as probate administration.

Even though probate laws and custom have been altered over time, their multifaceted purpose remains the same. First, they allow people to formalize how they intend to transfer their property when they pass away — for example, using a will. Then, when they die, their assets are collected, and their estates are used to pay for certain debts. Finally, the remainder of the property is distributed.

All assets that go through the probate process in Florida include those that do not reach others through ownership or designation (for example, via a bank account that is payable on death or through a life insurance policy). Ideally, the deceased person should have named an individual to serve as his or her executor — the person responsible for managing the deceased person’s affairs following his or her death. However, if no executor has been named, the court must appoint an administrator to handle this task.

Probate administration, which varies from one state to another, can certainly be complex and difficult to understand in Florida. This is especially the case for those dealing with the emotional aspect of losing a family member. However, an attorney can provide the necessary guidance for navigating the probate process successfully and with confidence from start to finish.