If your spouse passes away, you may need a court order confirming your community property interest in an estate or determining what property passes to you. If so, you may be able to avoid a formal probate and proceed with a spousal property petition. You may need a spousal property petition to claim property that you believe should be granted to you, or what has been named to be yours in the decedent’s will. As a spousal property petition is summary form of probate, without preparation or knowledge of how California’s probate, the situation can become complex or even contested by other interested parties.
Protect your best interests and the assets of your spouse by teaming up with the Law Offices of David A. Shapiro, P.C. Los Angeles Probate Attorney David Shapiro is one of just a relatively small number of legal professionals in the greater Los Angeles area who has earned board certification in probate and trust law and practices in focused on estate litigation, trust litigation and contested probate proceedings. This sets him apart in both experience and ability, which is truly invaluable for any spousal property petition case that must go to litigation. Indeed, our law firm handles each case as if it might to make certain our clients are ready for anything.
Put a legal leader in your corner by contacting our firm now.
Factors That Affect Spousal Property Petitions
A spousal property petition can be used by both surviving spouses and surviving domestic partners in California. The process begins by creating the petition with a Superior Court and citing the reasons why the deceased’s property should be transferred to you. If the case is simple, then merely giving your name and relation to the decedent could be enough. However, the presence of an estate plan created by the decedent could change matters noticeably.
Considerations for your spousal property petition:
- Sole beneficiary: If your decedent spouse created a will that named you as the only beneficiary, your spousal property petition can seek to transfer both community and separate property to you.
- Multiple beneficiaries: If you are not the only beneficiary named in the will of your deceased spouse, then your spousal property petition may become more complicated.
- No will: When someone passes away with no will, the court will follow California’s intestate succession guidelines to distribute the decedent’s separate property. In such a case, your spousal property petition may be able to seek the transference of assets considered to be your intestate share and confirm your community property interest.
It is important to realize that once you file your petition with the appropriate court, notifications of a hearing should be sent to anyone who might have a legitimate interest in the estate. This is where matters can complicate to the point of litigation, and where our law firm shines. Our Los Angeles probate litigation attorney is highly-skilled and familiar with courtroom processes and challenges. We will do everything in our power to make certain your best interests are respected and upheld.
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