How to Select the Right Probate Attorney
The probate process can be overwhelming for individuals who are grieving due to the passing of a loved one and confronted with the prospect of an unknown protracted court administration.
Probate, or the court supervised administration of a decedent’s estate, whether they died with a will or without a will (testate vs. intestate) is a very formalistic and statutory governed practice.
It is critical that you have the right counsel when navigating these water that are sometimes murky and turbulent.
So how do I know if you have the right guy or gal as your probate attorney? Well there are a few things that you may want to consider when retaining legal counsel for your probate voyage, namely:
- Is this your potential attorney’s specific field of practice area? Hopefully the answer is yes. Probate is an area of law that seems to be ever evolving with statutory revisions and applicable case law that may come to play in your case. It is in your best interest to retain counsel that is familiar with not only the statutory provisions governing the administration of estates but is also up to speed on any recent cases or even local practices of the court. Also, there are some creative solutions that will save you time and money that a probate greenhorn may not be familiar with.
- What is your potential attorney’s reputation in the community? You already know why that matters if you have ever looked at a Google or Yelp review. You want to work with someone who is not only competent in the law but also prompt, pleasant and deserving of your confidence. One effective way of getting the right fit is to look at what the potential attorney’s peers and past clients are saying about him or her. You can find a lot of that information on two independent review websites: www.AVVO.com and www.Martindale.com.
- What is this going to cost you? You may think – Dang! this attorney’s billable rate is $50 more per hour, I am going with the cheaper option. Here you may want to avoid being penny wise and pound foolish. You should not base your retention of an attorney entirely on fees. Fees in a probate can be calculated in several ways (look at NRS 150.060 if you are interested). The point is fees are important but getting the job done right and in a timely manner is also very important. The lowest bid may be the lowest for a reason.
- Are you hiring a large firm, a solo practitioner, or a smaller boutique firm? Why does that even matter? Well- are you going to be paying a larger fee to cover the larger overhead of a big firm? Are you going to have the support you need from a sole practitioner if something happens to that attorney or your case gets complicated? What you probably want is an attorney who knows their stuff, has the necessary resources and man/woman power in their company to efficiently and cost effectively get your probate administration over the finish line.
- Listen to your heart – no not the Roxette single, but really when hiring any professional your first impression is probably the right one. You have already considered all the aforementioned stuff but in the end, is this attorney someone who you feel comfortable with going forward?
We know probate is generally not something anyone voluntary elects to do. But now that you are here, let our highly skilled and professional staff help you find your way out. Read our reviews collected from 3rd party websites and see how we can help you too!