Michigan Probate Attorney
Losing a family member is always difficult, and the grieving process is often made more challenging by the need to probate your deceased loved one’s estate. An experienced Michigan probate attorney can guide you through the process with both skill and compassion.
Metro Detroit probate attorney Howard Linden has nearly five decades of experience concentrating his practice in Michigan probate law. He works both with grieving families and with other attorneys, who retain him for expert witness services and for handling the probate side of their practice.
Based in Southfield, Mr. Linden practices throughout Michigan, including Wayne County, Oakland County, Genesee County, Washtenaw County, and Macomb County. He also speaks to groups across the state regarding Michigan probate practice and procedure, and is a visiting professor at the University of Detroit Law School. Because of his extensive experience, Mr. Linden was involved in the drafting of the current Michigan statutes and court rules for probate practice and procedure.
Michigan Probate Practice and Procedure
Michigan probate practice and procedure involves opening and administering a decedent’s (deceased person’s) estate. When our law firm probates an estate, we take some or all of the following essential steps, depending on the nature of the estate:
- File the most recent will with the probate court
- Petition the probate court for appointment of a personal representative
- Identify and inventory the decedent’s property
- Have the property appraised
- Collect money owed to the estate
- Pay debts and taxes
- File appropriate tax returns
- Identify the beneficiaries
- Locate the beneficiaries
- Distribute the remaining property as outlined in the will and other documents (or according to Michigan intestacy law if there was no estate plan)
Wrongful Death Settlement and Distribution in Probate Court
When an attorney recovers compensation for a wrongful death, that money needs to be distributed to family members as outlined by the Michigan wrongful death statute and related case law.
The settlement and distribution process of wrongful death claims in probate court often confuse and frustrate attorneys who are hired to pursue compensation for the families, because these attorneys usually practice exclusively in the areas of personal injury, not probate. Failing to comply with relevant statutes and court rules will delay and jeopardize the settlement and distribution process and could leave an attorney vulnerable to a malpractice claim. That is why it is essential for personal injury attorneys to work closely with an experienced probate attorney in these matters.
Michigan probate attorney Howard Linden is regularly retained by wrongful death attorneys to handle the probate of Michigan wrongful death distributions. In January, 2006, the Michigan Bar Journal published Mr. Linden's article titled, “Wrongful Death Settlements and Distributions in the Probate Court.” We invite you to contact our law office to discuss Mr. Linden’s services.