9th Sep 2011

After the death of a loved one, meeting with an attorney is often necessary to determine whether a probate, trust administration, or some other legal action will be necessary.  The following items are essential to making that determination and should be brought to theinitial meeting with your attorney, if at all possible.

1. Estate Planning Documents of the Decedent (If Any).

At a minimum this includes the will and/or trust.  You should bring all estate planning documents and related information that can be found.  Your attorney can help you sort through what is important and what is not.  Even if there ends up being no will and/or trust, the law requires a thorough search to attempt to find them.

2.  Titles and Information Regarding the Property of the Decedent.

Broadly speaking, titles include items such as: deeds for real estate (including houses and other structures) and minerals, signature cards for bank and investment accounts, beneficiary designations for insurance policies, titles for personal property items with titles such as automobiles, bills of sale for personal property items without titles, current contracts, probate decrees for inherited property, and divorce decrees or other court orders awarding property.  Even when you do not have all the titles, certain information such as division orders or run stubs from oil companies, tax records from the County Assessor or Treasurer, safe deposit box information, and prior income tax returns and related documentation may be useful in finding and determining the status of property.  So, it is best to bring all the information that can be found regarding property and go through it with your attorney.

There may be other information that is necessary going forward, but the basic information outlined above is essential to a productive initial meeting.

If our office may be of assistance to you in these areas, do not hesitate to contact us at (580) 338-6503 or at coryhicks@fieldandhicks.com or using any of our contact information in the profile.  You can
also visit
www.fieldandhicks.com for more information.

This blog contains general information and the opinions of the author – not legal advice; you should seek the advice of competent counsel (attorney/lawyer) when considering any legal issues.


Leave a Reply