Does a Will avoid probate?
No! There is a very common misconception that having a Will means you will avoid probate. By itself, a Will is an instruction sheet for going through probate.
What is a Will?
The Personal Representative Has Four Main Jobs:
- Find what you own;
- Value the assets;
- Pay any creditors; and
- Distribute things the way you said in your will
BUT – the Will is used to go through probate. Probate is the court-guided process we go through when someone owned property or had more than $74,000 (as of 2022) and passes away. Colorado probates are easier than some states, but are not fun – they take at least six months and cost thousands of dollars!
Why do I need a Will?
A Pour-Over Will dumps assets into your trust that should have been in your trust but for whatever reason were not. A Will is a backup in case something goes wrong with your other estate planning documents; we liken it to wearing both a belt and suspenders, just really making sure the pants of your plan hold up no matter what happens.
How can I avoid probate?
Depending on your situation, different tools apply! Schedule a time to chat with one of our attorneys, or call us at 719-259-4971 to set up a free meeting!