Probating an estate with business interests can be a complex and challenging process. If you are the personal representative of such an estate, you may have to deal with various legal, financial, and operational issues that affect the business and its assets.
Here is what you need to know about the process:
What are Business Interests?
Business interests owned by a deceased person are considered probate assets if they are owned by the person individually or as a tenant in common with others. However, if the business interests are owned by a trust, a joint tenancy with right of survivorship, or a beneficiary designation, they are not considered probate assets, and therefore, do not require probate administration.
Why is Probating an Estate with Business Interests Different?
Probating an estate with business interests is different from probating an estate without business interests for several reasons, such as:
- Value Fluctuations: The value of business interests may also fluctuate over time due to market conditions, business performance, or other factors.
- Transferability: Business interests may be subject to restrictions on transferability, which may limit the options and rights of the personal representative and the beneficiaries of the estate.
- Income and Losses: Business interests may generate income or losses for the estate during the probate administration. The personal representative may have to file tax returns and pay taxes on behalf of the estate and the business entity and distribute income or losses to the beneficiaries according to their respective shares.
- Management Requirements: Business interests may involve ongoing management and operational decisions for the personal representative, who may have to deal with employees, creditors, customers, suppliers, regulators, or other owners of the business entity.
How to Probate an Estate with Business Interests in Florida
The process of probating an estate with business interests in Florida depends on the type and nature of the business interests involved.
However, the process generally involves:
- Identifying and inventorying all the business interests owned by the deceased person at the time of death. This may require reviewing documents such as articles of incorporation, bylaws, operating agreements, partnership agreements, stock certificates, ledgers, contracts, or other records.
- Determining the value of each business interest for probate purposes. This may require hiring a professional appraiser or accountant to perform a valuation analysis based on various factors and methods.
- Notifying and communicating with all the interested parties of the estate and the business entity. This may include filing a notice of administration with the probate court, publishing a notice to creditors in a newspaper, sending a notice to creditors and beneficiaries, and sending a notice to other owners or managers of the business entity.
- Pay any debts or obligations of the estate and the business entity. This may include paying taxes, fees, expenses, liabilities, or claims that arise from or relate to the business interests or the business entity.
- Distribute the business interests to the beneficiaries of the estate according to the will or the law. This may involve transferring, selling, liquidating, or dissolving the business interests or the business entity, depending on the wishes of the deceased person, the rights and preferences of the beneficiaries, and the terms and conditions of any applicable agreements or laws.
We Can Help You
Probating an estate with business interests can be a daunting task that requires legal expertise and practical experience. At Jurado & Associates, P.A., we have both. We are a full-service law firm that specializes in probate, estate planning, and business law.If you need assistance with probating an estate with business interests in Florida, do not hesitate to contact us today. You can reach us by phone at (305) 921-0976, by email at [email protected], or by WhatsApp at +1 (305) 921-0976.