Creditors And Probate In Florida

Under Florida law, the creditors of an estate may have claims against the assets of the estate. If the claims are valid and the estate is in probate, the creditor claims must be paid before any estate assets are paid to the estate's beneficiaries. If the decedent had large debts, the beneficiaries may receive little or none of the estate's assets.

At The Levins & Warnock Law Group, we have a comprehensive understanding of the probate laws. We use that knowledge to efficiently conduct the probate administration process and to minimize debts that are subject to creditor claims.

How We Can Help

One of the duties of the personal representative (executor) of an estate is to file notice of the probate proceeding to all known or reasonably ascertainable creditors of the estate. Those creditors then have three months to file a claim with the court. As part of our probate administration services, we will:

  • File the required notice to creditors
  • Field all inquiries from the estate's creditors
  • Make a determination as to the legitimacy of the debts
  • Work diligently to minimize the amount of debts that must be paid from the estate's assets

In some cases, a foreclosure defense action can overcome a mortgage claim against an estate. In a free consultation, a lawyer at our firm can review your situation and explain your options.

Avoiding Probate And Creditor Claims

A creditor to an estate only has a valid claim against the assets that are subject to probate. Any estate assets held outside of probate are generally not subject to a creditor claim, though in some cases creditors may have valid claims to those assets. Our firm can help you avoid probate and subsequent creditor claims. Some possible strategies that can keep assets out of probate include the creation of a revocable living trust, the creation of another type of trust, the purchase of life insurance or the retitling of estate assets. Let our estate planning attorneys put their knowledge and experience to work for you.

Free Consultation — Contact Our Firm

To schedule a free initial consultation about creditors and probate, contact The Levins & Warnock Law Group, in Fort Myers, Florida.