If one of your heirs is a minor or a person of diminished mental capacities or for any other reason requires another person to make his or her financial decisions, you may want to consider a trust. A trust is a relationship that you establish, with the help of your lawyer, in which one or more persons control the property—in this case the assets that you left for your heir(s)—of another for his or her benefit. Trusts are often used when an heir hasn’t reached adulthood, but could also be used to benefit the ward in a guardianship arrangement.
The following is a list of Georgia legal terms that are useful when researching Atlanta area attorneys to assist with a will or trust:
- Administrator: The person who administers a decedent’s estate when there is no will.
- Administrator With Will Annexed: The person, other than an Executor, who administers a decedent’s estate when there is a Will (the Will fails to name an Executor or the named Executor cannot or will not serve).
- Decedent: The deceased person.
- Executor: The person who administers a decedent’s estate when there is a Will.
- Heirs: Those persons who would inherit the estate of a decedent if there were no Will under the rules of descent and distribution. “Heir” does not mean the same thing as “beneficiary”, although an heir may also be a beneficiary.
- Intestate: Without a Will.
- Letters Testamentary/Letters of Administration: The official document issued by the Probate Court evidencing the authority of an executor or an administrator.
- Personal Representative: Any executor, administrator, guardian or trustee, but not a temporary administrator.
- Probate: The court procedure by which a Will is proved to be the valid last Will of a decedent; also used generically to refer to the legal process of administering a decedent’s estate.
- Probate Court: The Court having jurisdiction over proceedings to administer the estate of a decedent; also has other jurisdiction.
- Proceeding Pro Se: Representing yourself in court without an attorney
- Testator: A person who has made a Will.
- Will: A document, signed with the formalities required by Georgia law, by which a person makes disposition of his property, to take effect after his death.
If you are seeking legal advice about a will or trust and you live in the greater Atlanta area, call our Georgia probate and estate planning lawyers today. Miles Patterson Hansford Tallant will evaluate your case and take you through the process step by step. Please contact us at (770) 781-4100 or access our simple contact form here.