Per Florida Law, when a decedent’s estate is going through probate, they are required to have an attorney throughout the process. This also helps to ensure that the beneficiaries receive the proper share of the estate. An attorney will also work to protect your interests in case there are any disputes among beneficiaries or other interested parties.
As a premier probate law firm in Florida, Di Pietro Partners is uniquely qualified to handle probate and estate cases in Florida. If you need legal assistance involving probate matters in Lee County, contact one of our experienced probate lawyers today.
Probate Administration Process
In the State of Florida, Probate administration is a pretty straightforward process with three main types of probate administration, depending on the value of the estate. The value of an estate is determined by measuring the total value of property and assets that are owned by the decedent that are currently being processed through the probate court system.
Formal Administration – Any estate valued over $75,000 is eligible for formal probate administration. This is considered a standard type of probate proceeding and the most common type of probate proceeding in Florida.
Summary Administration – Specifically for estates valued at or below $75,000, Summary Administration is the second type of probate proceeding used. It is less common than formal administration but uses an expedited probate process.
Disposition Without Administration -The third and least commonly used option is Disposition Without Administration, which skips the probate process entirely. It can be only used if the decedent did not leave any real property behind and their remaining assets can be valued below the probate proceedings costs.
Filing Fort Myers Cases
When a decedent passes away, their probate cases are filed in the county in which they had their legal residence at the time of death. In Lee County, the court that’s responsible for probate is the Twentieth Judicial Circuit of Florida’s Probate Division. Our firm has decades of combined experience in this court system.
Twentieth Judicial Circuit of Florida
2075 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard
Ft. Myers , FL 33901
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In Florida, the common method for management of assets within a trust is by trust administration. The goal of this is to protect, manage and distribute assets of an individual in a proper manner. Trustees are the individuals tasked with the management of trusts, and are given that responsibility by the settlor who originally created the trust. The other party involved are beneficiaries, who receive benefits from the trust over time.
There are two main types of trusts – revocable and irrevocable. A revocable trust can be changed, altered or cancelled at any time by the grantor without the consent or prior knowledge of the beneficiaries. An irrevocable trust on the other hand is not eligible to be changed or canceled without the express consent of the beneficiaries. Florida uses three primary types of trusts, which are:
Living Trust – The most common form of trust, this can be configured either a revocable or irrevocable. A living trust can dictate the management of certain assets during an individual’s life, as well as their distribution after their death.
Testamentary Trust – Known as a “testamentary will”, this is a trust that is created as part of a will and therefore will only take effect after the decedent’s death.
Domestic Asset Protection Trust – Known commonly as DAPT, this trust is primarily intended to provide protection against creditors and also serves to protect assets from a spouse in the event of a divorce.
Talk With A Fort Myers Probate Lawyer
As an AV Preeminent® rated law firm that specializes in issues involving Florida probate, Di Pietro Partners is highly qualified for handling any probate matters. This range of services includes things such as simple estate administration all the way up to complex litigation and issues surrounding high value estates.
Our main office is located in Fort Lauderdale, in addition to multiple satellite offices located throughout the State including Fort Myers. Please be aware that our Fort Myers office location is available via appointment only.
Fort Myers Probate Office
9160 Forum Corporate Parkway
Fort Myers, FL 33905