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Kinda morbid funeral question


Re: Kinda morbid funeral question

  • H made sure I had a certified copy before he left. Can someone explain what probate is?

    Just becuase someone has a legal will drawn up doesn't mean the court has to accept it.  After a person dies, their will has to be put in front of a judge for the judge to determine that the will is valid, and begin the process of executing the will.  Before any property can be distrubted, or any of the decedants wishes can be put into action, the will must be judged as valid.


     From Wikipedia:

    Probate is the legal process of administering the estate of a deceased person by resolving all claims and distributing the deceased person's property under the valid will. A probate court (surrogate court) decides the validity of a testator's will. A probate interprets the instructions of the deceased, decides the executor as the personal representative of the estate, and adjudicates the interests of heirs and other parties who may have claims against the estate.[1]

    When my husband died, it was probably at least a week before I was able to go see a probate lawyer with his will. Once I did that, I think it took about a week for the will to go through the probate court -- though it could be faster depending on where you live. I was in a small town, and I think the local court (circuit court?) only did probate matters one day a week.    Only after the will had gone through probate court could anything in it be executed.

    So, if you have final wishes for your remains, it's okay to put it in your will, but realize that if there is ANY question about your wishes, and your will is the sole document stating your wishes, it will be a few weeks before your wishes can be acted upon.   It is always a good idea to make sure that EVERYONE knows what your wishes are (including your parents, siblings, and spouse) so that there isn't any disagreement about what to do with your remains or who gets to decide.   

     Even though we got along great while my husband was alive, my former in-laws became exceptionally mean people after my husband passed away.  We dont' talk anymore.   This is common.  Don't expect everyone to be civil after you pass away, because it's really common for parents to fight a surviving spouse on matters of disposition of remains.


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