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An Overview of the Virginia Probate Process

Probate is the legal process whereby a will is presented to the court to determine its validity and to verify it was intended as the decedent's Last Will and Testament. Typically, depending on the state, one of the two witnesses who were present at the signing of a will is required to appear before the court and state under oath that the requirements for a valid will were conducted at the signing. In order to expedite this process, an experienced attorney, during the creation of a will, will arrange for a self-proving affidavit, which will remove the need to subpoena witnesses to be brought before the court to testify that the will was properly signed.

After a will has been probated, the ownership of the property allocated in the will shall become public record. It is important to note that not all property in an estate is probate property. Any property transferred by a Trust or property that passes by survivorship will not need to be probated and will pass according to the trust agreement or rights of survivorship, respectively.

Any challenges to a will must be made during probate. A probate or will challenge is made by a party who is adverse to a will and who is challenging its validity. In the event of a probate or will challenge it is extremely important to consult an attorney who is experienced in estate planning and who will be able to provide you with knowledgeable legal guidance.

To see of you qualify for a free Fairfax County, Virginia probate consultation, contact McClanahan Powers by e-mail or phone at 703-520-1326. All calls and e-mails are returned within 24 business hours.

Virginia Ancillary Probate

Ancillary Probate typically refers to real estate or tangible personal property, excluding property placed into a Trust or under joint tenancy considerations, located in a state different from the one where the decedent was a resident. The principal place for probate is located in the state where the resident resided when they passed away. However, if the decedent owned real property or had tangible personal property in another state, then that state will have to probate those pieces of property separate from the primary probate. This means the estate will be forced to pay additional probate court costs, accounting fees, and attorney's fees.

For more information regarding Virginia Probate, please see Virginia Probate Administration.

Contact McClanahan Powers to see if you qualify for a free Virginia Probate Consultation

To see if you qualify for a free Fairfax VA probate consultation, please call McClanahan Powers at 703-520-1326. Or, to send an e-mail, please complete and submit the online form on this website. Flexible appointment times and payment options are available.