How Much Does Probate Cost?
Probate attorneys may charge an hourly fee or a percentage of the estate for the work they perform. I charge by the hour, and my retainer fee is $1,500. Many of my clients will not pay more than the $1500 retainer. My fees can be much lower than those of many attorneys, particularly the big law firms, who typically charge a percentage of the estate.
Big firms often charge 5 percent of the estate. For a $5 million estate, this would translate to attorney fees of $250,000 — a huge difference from my hourly fees. A typical fee for my total services on estate administration is less than $2,000.
Probate does not need to be expensive in Kentucky. My experience enables me to handle Probate administration in a straightforward manner that saves my clients money. I want to instill confidence and common sense in my client (the personal representative of the Estate). If my client is so willing, the cost of my office’s services can be reduced significantly.
How Long Does Probate Take?
Kentucky law requires that an estate be open for six (6) months. Many estates can be finalized and closed right after the six-month date. Of course, the amount of time that an estate stays open can vary depending on numerous factors. Most simply stated, if there are no problems, or problems are avoided, the estate can settle sooner. If there are problems, it is important that they be dealt with in a timely manner so that the estate can be settled sooner rather than later.
Many of my Probate proceedings take from six to nine months, and most do not extend beyond a year and a half.
Does a Person Get Paid for Serving as An Executor?
Yes. Kentucky law makes it clear a fee is to be paid for the Personal Representative’s services.
Do All Assets Need to Go Through Probate?
Certain assets, such as those held in Trust, life insurance proceeds, and retirement accounts may be distributed directly to beneficiaries. As your lawyer, I can advise you on which assets need to go through Probate, and which do not.