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Best Probate Lawyers in Abilene

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Carter Law Firm logo
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Carter Law Firm

618 Hickory street, Abilene, TX 79601
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning
  • Probate

Business Description

Based in Abilene, Carter Law Firm offers guidance in areas of family law, criminal defense, personal injury, litigation, and estate planning and probate. It helps clients draft estate planning documents, file necessary probate proceedings, and handle the probate process of their loved ones' wills. Victoria Carter, the firm's managing attorney, and her paralegal JoAnn Humphrey have over 50 years of combined legal experience. The attorney is a member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (3)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (2)
Avvo
5.0 / 5 (1)

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We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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Chase & Walls PLLC logo
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Chase & Walls PLLC

1181 Lytle Way, Abilene, TX 79602
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  • Estate Planning
  • Probate Litigation

Business Description

Chase & Walls PLLC is a law firm with estate planning attorneys in Abilene who share more than 78 years of combined experience compassionately assisting executors tasked with probating the will of a loved one. The attorneys can help with all aspects of the proceedings, from validating the will and notifying creditors, heirs, and beneficiaries to compiling the estate and dealing with its state and federal taxes. Chase & Walls PLLC also practices business and commercial law.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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Eddington & Worley logo
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Eddington & Worley

1290 S Willis St. Suite 100-L, Abilene, TX 79605
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Probate

Business Description

Eddington & Worley handles probate cases for families in the Abilene metro and neighboring communities. The firm assists families in identifying estates and properties, along with which assets are exempt from probate. It conducts debt inventory and payment, pays any remaining debts, and settles the distribution of assets as well as any disputes between beneficiaries. The firm is also open to clients from Corpus Christi, San Antonio, and Austin. It also handles cases related to adoption.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (10)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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Fergus & Fergus, L.L.P. logo
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Fergus & Fergus, L.L.P.

1049 North 3rd Street, Abilene, TX 79601
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning
  • Trust Administration

Business Description

Founded in 1964, Fergus & Fergus LLP is a small team of probate attorneys in Abilene who typically represent executors, administrators, heirs, and beneficiaries. They can assist with all administrative aspects of probate, such as validating the will, evaluating the decedent's assets, paying the estate's debts from its funds, and distributing the remaining assets in accordance with the will's instructions. Fergus & Fergus LLP also practices family law and oil and gas litigation.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.5
Google
4.5 / 5 (2)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
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Fergus & Tomanka, PLLC logo
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Fergus & Tomanka, PLLC

500 Chestnut Street, Abilene, TX 79602
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  • Estate Planning

Business Description

Fergus & Tomanka PLLC is a small firm with two probate attorneys in Abilene who share many years of experience handling estates of all sizes and cases where the deceased failed to leave a will. The attorneys can assist with every stage of the administration of a will, such as validating it, compiling the estate's assets, notifying creditors, and mediating in minor disagreements between heirs and beneficiaries. The firm also practices family law.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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John T. Montgomery Attorney at Law logo
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John T. Montgomery Attorney at Law

3300 South 14th Street Suite 201, Abilene, TX 79605
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning
  • Probate

Business Description

John T. Montgomery, Attorney at Law, serves individuals, families, and small businesses in Abilene and the surrounding areas. The firm provides legal services for probate, estate planning, oil and gas, and criminal defense. From preparing wills and powers of attorney to estate administration and distribution of assets, principal John Montgomery guides clients through the complex Texas probate law. The practice also has an office located in St. Albany to serve clients in the area.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.8
Google
4.5 / 5 (182)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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Katie McCracken Gore Attorney at Law logo
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Katie McCracken Gore Attorney at Law

1150 North 2nd St, Suite 111, Abilene, TX 79601
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  • Estate Planning
  • Trust Administration
  • Probate

Business Description

Katie McCracken Gore, Attorney at Law, is a probate lawyer providing legal services to families and individuals in Abilene. The firm assists clients in probate and estate planning matters, including the drafting of last will, HIPAA releases, durable powers of attorney, and revocable and irrevocable trusts. Additionally, it represents clients in estate litigations and elder law matters. Sole practitioner Katie Gore started her legal career in 2013 and is currently a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.9
Google
4.8 / 5 (5)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (5)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
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Law Office of Lee Ann Morris, PLLC logo
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Law Office of Lee Ann Morris, PLLC

500 Chestnut Street, Abilene, TX 79601
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning
  • Trust Administration

Business Description

The Law Office of Lee Ann Morris PLLC is a solo practice founded by Ms. Morris, a probate lawyer in Abilene who has been representing clients in the surrounding courts since 2004. The attorney can assist with the administrative aspects of probate, such as collecting the decedent's estate and dealing with its creditors. The Law Office of Lee Ann Morris PLLC also practices family law, including divorce, child support, and adoption.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.3
Google
4.3 / 5 (23)
Facebook
4.7 / 5 (12)
Yelp
1.0 / 5 (1)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
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Law Offices of David M. White logo
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Law Offices of David M. White

1500 Industrial Blvd Ste 303, 79602, TX Abilene
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning

Business Description

The Law Offices of David M. White provides legal services in the Abilene metro. The law firm offers comprehensive probate services, including transferring real estate, solving estate disputes, and negotiating with creditors. It also assists clients in preparing estate plans such as updating or correcting existing wills or trusts, preparing trust agreements, and determining advanced medical directives. White also practices law in criminal defense and personal injury cases. He is the president-elect of the Abilene Young Lawyers Association.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.3
Google
4.4 / 5 (75)
Avvo
4.3 / 5 (18)
Yelp
3.5 / 5 (5)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
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Detail
––
Moster Craft PC Attorneys At Law logo
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Moster Craft PC Attorneys At Law

3301 N 3rd St, Abilene, TX 79603
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  • Estate Planning

Business Description

Moster Craft PC Attorneys At Law is a law firm representing individuals and families in Abilene. It is a 12-person team is led by Charles A. Moster and Lindsey B. Craft-Smalley, who has more than 33 years of experience and previously served in the U.S. Department of Commerce. The practice areas covered by the firm include estate planning, providing representation in probate proceedings and litigation and handling asset protection, elder law, and guardianship issues. The firm also takes cases involving business and employment law and trademarks and copyrights.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
4.6
Google
4.6 / 5 (5)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
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––
Regan Law Firm, PLLC logo
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Regan Law Firm, PLLC

104 Pine Street, Abilene, TX 79601
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning

Business Description

Regan Law Firm PLLC is a solo practice founded by Attorney Blaise Regan, whose areas of practice include probate administration involving estates of all sizes. Mr. Regan can assist executors, helping them perform their duties within the law and protecting them from accusations of breaching the limitations of their roles. He also fully administers decedents' estates. Attorney Regan is a St. Mary's University School of Law graduate and a member of the Abilene Young Lawyers Association.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (2)
Facebook
5.0 / 5 (2)
The Law Office Of Dick Harris PC logo
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The Law Office Of Dick Harris PC

100 Chestnut Street, Abilene, TX 79602
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  • Trusts
  • Wills
  • Estate Planning
  • Probate Litigation

Business Description

The Law Office Of Dick Harris PC is a private practice located in Abilene that represents clients in Taylor County, Jones County, and the surrounding areas. Its areas of practice focus on matters of wealth management and transfer, including probate. Attorney Dick Harris has more than 33 years of experience probating wills, assisting executors, and resolving minor disputes between heirs and beneficiaries. The attorney also practices commercial litigation, bankruptcy, and estate planning.

Reputation:

We scour the internet for reviews from well-known resources. Each provider is evaluated based on the quality and quantity of their reviews, their presence on multiple review sites, and their average minimum rating.
5.0
Google
5.0 / 5 (1)

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail

Consumers utilizing Expertise.com are free to communicate and contract with any lawyer they choose. Expertise.com is not involved in the confidential attorney-client relationship. Featured lawyers pay a reasonable advertising cost to market their legal services with Expertise.com and must meet similar selection criteria as other lawyers. All cases are different. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What does a probate attorney do?

Probate attorneys are licensed professionals who represent executors and heirs after someone has died. They provide personalized legal advice, assist with tax planning, settle debts, and facilitate the distribution of assets. Probate attorneys typically represent clients during administrative proceedings overseen by probate courts, although some litigators focus on handling disputes and lawsuits related to contested estates.

What is probate court?

Probate court works with the family or beneficiaries of a deceased person to validate their last will and testament. The courts review the individual's will to identify and calculate assets, pay off remaining debts, and distribute the remaining property to beneficiaries per the deceased person's requests. Depending on state laws, property valued under a certain amount may not require probate.

How long do you have to file probate after death?

The amount of time loved ones have to file a will after a person dies varies from state to state. While California courts require probate to be filed within one year, New York has no deadline. That being said, it's advisable to file probate as quickly as possible once a person has died, as the process itself can take anywhere from a few weeks to more than a year.

Does life insurance go through probate?

Life insurance doesn't need to go through the probate courts if the deceased individual has named a beneficiary on their policy. However, life insurance policies without beneficiaries, or with beneficiaries who are either deceased themselves or cannot be contacted, go directly to the deceased individual's estate. When this happens, life insurance proceeds must go through probate court to determine how funds should be allocated.

Do household items go through probate?

While the exact rules do vary from state to state, most household items don't require probate and are automatically left to immediate families unless otherwise stated in the deceased person's will. When it comes to property, only items above a certain value or held in title are required to go through probate in most states.

Do bank accounts with beneficiaries have to go through probate?

In the event a beneficiary has been named, bank accounts are not required to go through probate and will be paid directly to the person designated by the deceased individual. However, should that individual be deceased themselves or if contact cannot be made after a certain period of time, funds will be allocated to the estate and put through the probate process.

What happens if no probate is filed?

Depending on the circumstances, probate may not be required in all cases. If a person passes on and their remaining property is jointly owned, it automatically transfers to the other owner. However, if a property is not jointly owned and no probate has been filed, the executor of the will won't be able to transfer titles or cash assets to beneficiaries. Be aware that the specific laws surrounding probate requirements vary from state to state.

What is probate real estate?

Probate real estate is the process that happens when a realtor steps in to handle the sale or transfer of a deceased person's owned home to another individual. In some cases, the house is sold as a means of liquidating assets, and proceeds from the sale are used to pay debts or are distributed to beneficiaries.

Can I probate a will or estate without an attorney?

It is possible to probate a will and close an estate without hiring an attorney. However, it requires multiple steps and an understanding of the law. The first step is to petition the court to appoint a representative for the estate. Next, the executor must notify all heirs and creditors before switching ownership from the decedent to the estate. Once all debts, taxes, and final expenses have been paid, funds can be transferred to heirs. To close an estate, the executor must submit a report showing the court that all obligations and final wishes have been satisfied. While a will and estate may seem straightforward, things can get complicated quickly if multiple heirs are involved, or if disputes or disagreements arise over distribution. A probate lawyer can help navigate these disputes effectively, and take pressure off the executor when beneficiaries aren’t getting along.

How many years can an estate remain in probate?

If the will or proposed distribution of property is contested, an estate may remain in probate for several years. The timeline depends on how long relatives have to initiate probate, how long creditors have to come forward, and how busy the courts are. In some states, such as Florida, relatives have just 10 days to initiate probate, and the entire process takes approximately six months. In other areas, such as Massachusetts, the process can last one to two years, although the majority of probate activities occur in the first nine months. The value of the estate also affects the duration of the case. For example, California and Texas have simplified procedures for smaller estates, such as those valued at $150,000 or less.

When is a will's probate an automatic process?

Probate is the legal process of validating a last will and testament to ensure that the decedent's wishes are followed. A probate judge may automatically clear wills if they're accompanied by an affidavit from the decedent, a notary, and a witness. Some assets, including financial accounts with designated beneficiaries, and funds held by certain types of trusts don't have to go through probate.

What does it mean when property is under probate?

Real estate that's under probate is typically liquidated through the court system, which is most common when someone dies without a will. Home buyers who are interested in this type of property must follow special rules regarding deposits, which are sometimes nonrefundable, and buyer's premiums. Additionally, the court must approve the purchase price.

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