Probate is the legal process that is used to distribute a
person’s property after their death. If
the person died with a will, it is presented (or admitted) to the court and
proved as valid. The personal
representative is appointed. He/she inventories
and values the deceased’s property, pays any debts and taxes, and distributes
assets to the beneficiaries.
If the person died without a will, the process is much the
same. However, the state’s rules of
intestate succession will govern who inherits the decedent’s property.