Probate is the court process by which an administrator or executor is appointed to wind up and resolve a decedent’s estate, as directed by a will, trust, or state law. Probate also involves lawfully recognizing the decedent’s heirs.
Winding up the estate includes paying just debts, resolving tax matters, and distributing the decedent’s estate to heirs and/or legatees. In Cook County, probate is typically 9 to 14 months but can be much longer depending on the complexities of the estate, e.g., family dynamics. Probate is included in our Family Benefit Protection Plan.