Your loved one has passed on, and you’re ready to put their estate quickly to rest. Unfortunately, going by the book means their affairs could take months to resolve.

While each probate case is different, the average time to settle an estate is nearly 16 months. Minimum requirements in Minnesota generally stretch the timeline to at least a few months, while complications due to size and scope can cause probate to really span the calendar.

Timing matters

Probate court can get underway shortly after your family member passes on, but the process can carry on thanks to a host of procedures that make sure you do everything accordingly:

  • Start the process: To begin, you’ll likely need to file with the probate court in the deceased’s home county. The will may also need to be submitted and approved by the court.
  • Publish notice: You’ll then have to provide notice of the proceedings officially. This means notifying any beneficiaries and heirs that you’re handling the estate, and publishing notification so that creditors know to submit claims. Creditors could have up to four months to come forward.
  • Counting assets: Next, you need to calculate and present all the assets. The court could require an appraisal of everything from bank accounts and life insurance to real estate and business interests.
  • Claims: The estate will probably need to pay off any outstanding expenses, taxes and debts. This could mean selling off property or investments to cover costs.
  • Closing out: Once you’ve paid everything, the court will want you to provide a tally of everything that remains in the estate. Once you have everything counted, the court will look at the final wishes of your loved one and you can distribute the remaining assets.

Knowledge of the system could help you navigate the many steps required in the probate proceedings to a faster resolution. Fulfill their wishes as fast as the probate court allows to bring timely peace to your loved one’s estate.