With the power of Google and YouTube combined, we pretty much take on any task, even down to building a house from the very trees in our backyard. As we continue to advance in technology, we’re opting for less human touch and more convenience provided at the touch of a finger. And boy do we have news! The estate administration process will soon allow you to file everything online, but that may be light years away. Nonetheless, the news is out!

The Self Diagnosed Patient

One thing to note, as heavily as we depend on search engines and videos to guide us, if we persist enough, we’ll become much like a physician’s worst nightmare: a self-diagnosed patient. Confusion can arise when we have an endless supply of information that may guide us well or right into the pit of failure.

Often when we work with individuals who’ve taken on probate alone in the past, they start to realize certain important aspects of probate that the courts never brought up.  And for that these tasks were never completed. The question you’ll have to ask yourself is, “Is it worth doing on my own if it means it’ll come back to bite me down the road”.

Doing It on Your Own

If you’ve met with a clerk of court it is likely that you have been told, “we don’t give legal advice”. What this means for you is that any DIY probate matter that happens will be 100% your responsibility. If you do have a question, you will be directed to what NC Statute says and nothing more.  The problem with this is that if and when legal questions arise, you are in the dark. Many former Administrators and Executors boast after taking on an estate alone. “I feel like I can transition from my current career to any career now – knowing what I know and having done what I’ve done.” Let this paint the reality of what it means to run with the ball on your own. Sometimes, it’s just easier to accept that it’s going to take a village to make something work out.

With our trusted resources and experienced estate administration team, we aim to do nothing more than to help put you on the right path. Even if you don’t engage one, it’s worth sitting down with an attorney to know what is required of you to successfully close out the estate.

We encourage you to set the phone down and see what it means to have direct and applicable knowledge on your side, by sitting down with one of our attorneys at NC Planning.

This piece was created for an estate administration series by Kayoua Lee-DiFiore, an Estate Administration Paralegal at NC Planning.