When someone dies, their assets and estate are most often passed onto the next of kin or any surviving estate owners; however, this can all change if their will states otherwise. There can be lots of financial difficulties and responsibilities to undertake if you are one of the only surviving, if not the only surviving relative of the deceased.
You may need to look at Probate. What probate means is dealing with an estate of a deceased loved one, the process of how to clear any debts, disseminate their assets accordingly to the correct people in line with what their will states. It can be long and time consuming, but ensuring you have the right help throughout will be key to make the process easier. This is what is probate in California is often like, but it will vary from region to region.
If you have received the assets and you have been given the deceased person’s estate, it may be that you would like to look at selling the property. It will be important to look at hiring someone to help you value the home and look at the best options for reselling a home that is not your own. If the deceased has any significant debts, this will be deducted from their estate and hinders the assets that you will receive. Any remaining assets will be left to you following payment of their debt but it is likely that they will have little debt and it won’t affect the assets. If they have no estate then debts are dissolved. If their will does not cover their estate, because they do not own any estate, then the other assets may include their savings, money in their bank accounts, any insurance policies or pension schemes that they were paying into. You will need to provide all the relevant documentation of their insurance documents, bank statements and their death certificates to prove that you have access to their accounts and they you will be able to collect the money as the deceased had wished. If they own a small business, when they die, they may state in their will that it will be passed onto you, this may happen with family businesses. If this is the case, then you will most likely not have to pay any inheritance taxes on the business. If the business is to be dissolved at their request, then it is likely that when writing their will, the deceased would have shared their business assets accordingly to their staff, it is usually a standard procedure, and the business is then subsequently dissolved.
It may seem a lot to process, but maintaining a good understanding of probates will help you should the situation arise within family or business. Responsibility and knowledge is key to avoid any fees, issues and long-term issues with receiving any assets rightfully left to you. Have a checklist of what may be needed and give yourself the time to become confident with the regulations.