Managing Personal Belongings after Death


Dying is inevitable. Every person will eventually face death which is why some people have taken the necessary steps to secure their belongings so that these belongings will be properly allocated after death. After all, no person would want their belongings to go to waste especially after they die. Most people want to allocate their belongings so that these belongings can be distributed to family members.

Others would decide to donate their belongings to charity to help people in need. Regardless of what you want to happen to your belongings after you die, you need to make sure that you make plans for your belongings while you still have time. To do this, you can hire the services of an estate-planning attorney. This way, you will be guided through the process of allocating your belongings for when you die.

Allocating belongings is also applicable to your friends and loved ones. You can assist them in making plans for what they wish to happen to their belongings once they pass away. However, this process can be very confusing and might require you to conduct thorough research or ask a lawyer about the process. This is especially challenging to individuals who have been given the task of making sure that they allocate the belongings of their loved ones properly.

The most common belongings that need to be allocated after a person’s death include jewelry, furniture, photographs, artwork, and housewares. These things are surprisingly more difficult to distribute compared to money. Money can be easily divided among people included in a deceased person’s will. However, the value of belongings like those just mentioned is more difficult to determine. Therefore, it will take a lot of time to allocate these belongings properly.

Highlighted below are the steps you need to take to allocate the personal items of your loved ones after they pass away. If you are the heir or beneficiary, this task might be very challenging for you. However, you need to go through this process to make sure that you will be able to properly allocate your loved ones’ belongings. You need to make sure that you follow their wishes, especially if they have specified this before their death. Read on to understand the legal process of allocating the belongings of your loved ones after they pass away.

Getting to Know the Probate Law

Before allocating the belongings of your deceased loved ones, you need to make sure that you have the right to do so. The probate court handles all matters related to distributing all the belongings of a deceased person. There are instances when the probate process is straightforward and seamless. However, there are also instances when the probate process can be very complicated.
signing a will

The probate process is seamless if the decedent had a will. On the other, the process can be complicated if the decedent did not have a will. This would mean that you need to qualify as the decedent’s heir to manage the decedent’s properties.

Differentiate Between Real Property vs. Personal Property

When a loved one dies, you need to differentiate between personal property and real property. Personal property pertains to items like clothing, jewelry, cars, and furniture. Cash and stocks also fall under personal property. On the other hand, real property pertains to buildings and land that a person owns.

Taking an Inventory is Important

If your deceased loved one has taken an inventory of all the things that he or she owns, it will be easier for you to determine the value of each item and allocate the items accordingly. However, if your deceased loved one failed to take an inventory of his or her belongings, allocating these belongings will be very difficult. Therefore, you need to learn from this experience and start taking an inventory of your belongings. By doing this, it will be easier to allocate your belongings once you pass away.

Communicate with Family Members

When allocating the belongings of your loved ones, you need to communicate with other family members so that you can all decide on the best way to distribute belongings, especially if the decedent did not have a will. If you want the process to be less complicated, you can make the allocation decisions on your own and then communicate your decisions to family members afterward. This way, you can still maintain transparency within your family.

When it comes to allocating the belongings of a deceased individual, the law has specifications on the process that needs to be followed. The law is important because it helps make the allocation process easier and more seamless.

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