My relative died without a will. How do I find the best probate lawyer in New York City?

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Regina Kiperman - Estate Planning & Probate - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Regina Kiperman

Located in New York, NYRK Law, P.C.

New York, NY
Phone: 917-261-4514
Fax: 212-248-2155

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Every probate attorney is different. It’s important to choose one who can help you achieve your specific goals and those of your family. If your relative died without a will, or if you have other concerns related to wills, trusts and estate administration, here are some attributes your attorney should have: 

  • The best probate lawyer should be focused solely on probate and estates. You need an attorney who is informed and savvy about probate specifically, and who handles wills and other matters of probate on a daily basis. Think of it this way: you would not hire a plumber to do the work of a carpenter, so don’t hire just any attorney to handle probate.
  • The best probate lawyer is a regular at the court in the county where the probate is processed. Every county has a specific way of handling probate. For example, different counties have different bond affidavits. Submitting the wrong form can result in delays and other costly problems. Your probate lawyer should be familiar with the processes and required documentation in the county where the estate is being probated. Your probate lawyer should also have frequent, face-to-face interaction with the clerks at the court. This is very important. Your attorney should know the clerks and the court if you want probate matters to be handled effectively and efficiently.
  • The best probate lawyer will handle all aspects of the probate process, leaving no stone unturned. This involves, among other things, gathering all documents, identifying heirs and distributees, and making all necessary filings with the court. Such filings may include petitions for letters of administration and affidavits of assets and liabilities. The best probate lawyer will have outstanding tenacity and attention to detail in all filings, documentation and evidence.
  • The best probate lawyer will customize a plan that takes into account every aspect of your specific situation. You should meet with an attorney who listens well and knows what questions to ask. An overlooked detail could lead to delays or even conflict among family members. With a full understanding of your situation, your lawyer should be able to anticipate and mitigate any potential problems or disputes. In general, your attorney should have a developed strategy for helping you achieve your short-term and long-term goals.
  • The best probate attorney is compassionate during a trying time. She understands what you’re going through, and she wants to help. She is also practical, and she knows the nuances of the probate process. Your attorney should guide you through probate, help you understand the process, and keep you informed every step of the way. Your attorney should tell you what you can expect in a way that is caring and easily understood.
  • The best probate attorney doesn’t charge an excessive amount for probate services. The loss of a loved one is difficult enough. You should not be charged exorbitant fees in addition to what you are already going through. The best probate attorney charges reasonable fees and lets you know what you can expect. 

Get the Help You Need from an Experienced and Dedicated Probate Attorney 

Regina Kiperman, founder of RK Law, handles all aspects of probate and estate administration throughout New York City. Her legal practice is focused exclusively on probate and estate planning, including the resolution of probate disputes and the creation of wills, trusts, powers of attorney and more. If you have questions or concerns about wills, fiduciary duties, kinship hearings or other probate matters, RK Law can help.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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