Houston Attorney for the Probate Process
The Texas Probate Code provides for various alternative types of probate administrations, each with its own set of rules and procedures, and thus, the Texas probate process can be very precise and exacting.
At the law firm of Robert M. Mendell, Attorney at Law, P.C., the probate process is handled by Robert M. Mendell, a lawyer with more than 35 years of experience and who is a Board Certified Tax Attorney and Attorney CPA.
Our Law Firm Answers Questions and Works Promptly and Professionally
For the family dealing with the estate of a family member, prompt and professional attention by an experienced attorney can be very important. Mr. Mendell personally handles every case and answers client questions and concerns throughout the probate process.
- The probate attorney will first meet with the family to accumulate information regarding the decedent and the estate, along with a review of the decedent's will if the decedent left a will.
- If there is no will, the probate attorney will gather information regarding the identity and location of all potential heirs.
- The formal probate process begins with the filing of various documents with the probate court.
- In a situation involving the probate of a properly executed will with no contesting heirs, there will be a court hearing where the executor/executrix is appointed and the process is fairly simple.
- The probate attorney will work with the executor/executrix in administering the assets and liabilities of the estate with third parties and family members.
- Statutory notices, inventories of assets and other formal probate documents will be prepared and handled by the probate attorney.
- Some assets associated with the decedent (typically life insurance, retirement plan assets, joint tenancy accounts and payable on death accounts) will be administered, usually with the assistance of the probate lawyer, outside of the formal probate process.
- Debts of the decedent or the decedent's estate will be paid. Estate properties will be liquidated and/or transferred to the appropriate estate beneficiaries.
- For taxable estates, the U.S. Estate Tax Return, Form 706, will be prepared and filed, usually by the probate lawyer or a certified public accountant. The preparation of the Form 706 often involves sophisticated tax planning and analysis. Any necessary U.S. Income Tax Returns, Forms 1041, will be prepared and filed.
Please see our FAQ on Probate and Estate Administration.
When an experienced attorney performs all the steps of the probate process, the process will generally be efficient, cost effective and timely from the original filing to the completion of asset distribution. Contact our office by e-mail or by calling 713-888-0700.