Our goal in estate planning is to avoid probate. Main reasons for avoiding probate administration are: A) Eliminate the tremendous family expenses involved for probate administration, and B) Eliminate the long delay associated with the process that can tie up all the family funds ending up with a financial burden. The process of probate administration is controlled by the LA Superior Court system.
In this tough economic climate problems exist for both government agencies and private business. California, has suffered massive budget operating deficits in recent years causing severe cutbacks in government services. The impact on the Los Angeles Superior Court system includes increasing Court fees charged for filing petitions and pleadings including probate filings. Beginning July 2009, the Superior Court started a monthly program where the courts were closed the third Wednesday of every month. Court personnel work time is reduced causing delays and in processing the legal matters.
California budgetary problems are getting worse. There was an announcement that will slow down the probate administration process. On 3-17-10 it was announced that the LA Superior Court will lay off 329 staff members and closing 17 courtrooms county-wide. Court officials mentioned posibly 500 more people could be laid off and 50 more courtrooms closed by September 2010. Presiding Judge Charles "Tim" McCoy warned of delays and longer lines.
Now is a very important time to create an estate plan that avoids the cost and delay regarding probate administration. A living trust is a private agreement that permints your chosen fiduciaries to administer your estate privately, outside of the Superior Court. This trust, along with powers of attorney, allow your loved ones to privately manage your affairs in the event of your sudden incapacity. The documents, allow your family to avoid having to file a probate administration proceeding, or seek a conservatorship, through the LA Courts. A well constructed estate plan is significantly more economical than relying on the default probate systems administered by the Los Angeles Superior Court. If you have been reluctant do not wait any longer! Create an estate plan today—your loved ones will be grateful for this intelligent decision.