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Florida probate laws always changing

Florida has a well-established probate code that dates back to the turn of the 19th century. In addition to the code, our state enjoys ample legal precedent from judges that have interpreted these laws. As a result, there is some continuity and certainty in the probate of an estate. At the same time, the Florida Legislature is constantly tinkering with the code to improve efficiency and ensure that the intent of the decedent is honored.

Of course, black and white laws do not fit every set of circumstances. Ambiguities and inequities arise daily in regard to the application of the code to a specific estate. This can be extremely troubling to the beneficiaries and heirs of the estate who have an interest in their expected inheritance.

This can leave the personal representative in a tough spot. The personal representative is given the unenviable job of administering the assets and liabilities of the estate and ensuring that the decedent’s wishes are carried out.

Unfortunately, it is often impossible to make everyone happy. Administering an estate can cause friction amongst family members, which often leads to conflicts that must be litigated. Given the exposure to a fractious dispute, personal representatives are encouraged to retain an experienced Fort Myers estate lawyer.

These professionals can organize the administration of a claim and provide the latest in legal precedent to the interpretation of the will. The application of their knowledge and expertise often helps estates avoid conflict by ensuring a transparent and fair administration.

Source: 1800probate.com, “Probate in Florida,” Accessed on December 23, 2014

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