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Estate Planning

The sudden loss of a loved one can be very traumatic. Probate is something most people want to avoid at all times, but especially after a traumatic event like the death of a loved one.  If you find yourself there, we can sort it out for you and make it easier for you.

Probate normally involves high costs and takes a long time. Our goal is to make this process as pleasant as possible. Probate law can be complex, so knowing the applicable cases that have created the “case law” in this area of law can help. Putting it all together is what an experienced probate attorney does for you.



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A Probate Court is a special court with power over the administration of estates of deceased persons.  In Wisconsin, typically a probate is necessary if a person dies with more than $50,000.00 of total assets without beneficiary designations and without a trust.  If a will has been drafted, the will can be presented to the probate court and the personal representative in the will can be appointed and the administration of the will can begin.  If there is no will, then an interested party can come forward and nominate themselves or another person to be the personal representative. 

A typical probate may last a year; however some may end more quickly and some may last years.  It is very important to have an attorney to help you administer the probate.  There are many deadlines and notice requirements that a probate attorney is familiar with to help you through this court maze.

Informal Probate

Various reasons exist for the necessity of a formal probate designation. If waiver and consent signatures from all interested parties cannot be obtained to approve the petition for personal representative, then formal administration is needed.  The court must hold a hearing on the final account after its filing unless waived by the interested parties.  

Formal Probate

This process can be used to remove a deceased person’s joint interest from real estate without the need to pass through probate.  Our office prepares this document to remove a deceased spouse’s interest in real estate. 

Termination of Decedent’s Property Interest 

These petitions are required to give a person general authority to discover assets.  Often these proceedings are used to discover or pursue wrongful death lawsuits on behalf of the deceased.  If the special administrator is unsure about the amount of assets owned by the deceased, this action can give general authority to discover and inquire as to the amount of assets that may exist.

Special Administration

When a resident of Wisconsin dies with less than fifty thousand ($50,000.00) dollars of assets then this affidavit can be used to authorize the person signing the document to access the assets of the deceased to pay last expenses and creditors and to disburse the remainder to heirs accordingly.  An attorney can assist you in navigating through this complicated process. 

Transfer By Affidavit