Death of a Loved One

Probate & Trust Administration

If your recently-passed friend or family member was the owner of an estate or creator of a trust, Vouga Elder Law's services include both assisting the Personal Representative of an Estate that must be in Probate, and assisting a Trustee (where a trust exists) in the next steps. Get started today.

Hi. I’m Dana Vouga, Certified Senior Advisor and Elder Law Paralegal with Vouga Elder Law & Estate Planning.  First, know we are sorry for your loss. It can be a very difficult dealing with the emotional loss of a loved one and not really knowing where to turn or what to do next.

All of us in the firm has lost someone special to us at one time or another. We know that some days are good, and some days aren’t.  It’s ok.  We understand. We will help you deal with the part of life that must keep going, while you work on the emotional part.  We will work with you, hand in hand, to get through the legal aspects of losing a loved one.  The next steps to take will depend on what estate planning, if any, your loved one had in place.

Situation – No will or trust:  If your loved one has no Last Will and Testament (a Will) and has assets in their individual name (without a beneficiary designation), this is called dying intestate.  This will require you to go through a Probate Court supervised estate administration.  This is commonly referred to as Probate.   Dying intestate makes Probate more challenging because it requires Probate Court supervision, adds expenses, the law determines who inherits the decendent’s assets, and generally lengthens the time to distribute the estate.

Situation – Will in place If your loved one had a Last Will and Testament, Probate is still required.  However, your loved one will have determined who inherits, who will handle their Probate (their Personal Representative formerly known as Executor or Executrix) and ask that the Probate Court have minimal supervision.

Situation – Trust in place:  If your loved one had a Revocable Living Trust or Asset Protection Trust, there will be Trust Administration to transfer the assets in the trust to the beneficiaries.  Having a trust avoids Probate and makes asset distribution much easier.

No matter the level of assistance you need after a loved one passes, we will be able to help in all areas of estate or trust administration.

Key Things to Remember:

Having No Will or Dying Intestate

  • Requires Probate
  • The most expensive and lengthy form of Probate

Having A Last Will and Testament

  • Still requires Probate
  • Typically less expensive than not having a Will

Having a Revocable Living Trust or Asset Protection Trust

  • Avoid Probate
  • Makes asset distribution to beneficiaries easier

Our experience and approach is intended to give you peace of mind and allow you to maximize the time you have with your loved one. Every situation is unique, but our process most often progresses as follows: 

Step 1

Request A FREE Conference

Submitting our conference request is fast and easy and you can expect a response the same or next business day.

Step 2

We Will Call You To Schedule a Conference

Once we have received your request, our Client Services Coordinator will reach out to schedule an in-person conference to understand more about your situation and how we can help.

Step 3

Meet With A Member of Our Team

Given that everyone’s situation is unique, it is important that we gather information to help recommend that best course of action.

Get Your "Ducks In A Row" with Vouga Elder Law & Estate Planning!

Call TODAY at 636-394-0009, or use the link below, to set up a FREE, NO OBLIGATION conference!

Request Today