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Common causes of estate disputes in Arizona

There is a popular misconception that estate planning is reserved for the elderly and the super wealthy. While both of those groups are certainly encouraged to have an estate plan, the same could be said of everyone regardless of age or economic status. There are certain mistakes that you can avoid that can ensure that your estate goes through the probate process quickly and efficiently in Arizona.

Dying intestate

Not having an estate plan doesn’t exempt your estate from the probate process. In fact, it only serves to keep it tied up in the probate process even longer. While there is certainly more to a complete estate plan than simply having a will, your will is arguably the most important document. If you die intestate, anyone who files a motion claiming a stake in your estate can keep your estate tied up in court for months or years.

Choosing the wrong executor

The executor that you choose should be someone who is trustworthy, responsible and organized. If you pick someone based solely on their status as a close friend or family member, you may have put your estate in jeopardy from the start. The executor you choose is responsible for getting important documents signed by other heirs and beneficiaries and ensuring that paperwork reaches the court promptly. Choosing the wrong executor can open your estate up to numerous disputes and other road bumps in the process.

Failure to update your estate plan

Divorces, the birth of new children and other life-changing events can create the need for you to update your estate plan. Failure to do so can lead to the potential of challenges being filed against your estate. It is a good idea to review your estate plan at least once a year to ensure that everything that should be included in your estate plan is in there.

Estate planning, whether creating a new plan or updating an existing one, is a legal process. You should consult an attorney to ensure that every aspect of your estate plan is legally binding.

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