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Do you Own Real Estate in States Other Than New Hampshire? Beware Probate costs!!

Most people do not realize that their estate might have to be probated more than once: once in New Hampshire because they are New Hampshire residents and once again in Massachusetts, Florida, Arizona or wherever they may own real estate. Some of those states can have very expensive Probate costs. Florida law, for example, allows for a “reasonable fee” for an attorney representing an estate. “Reasonable is defined as 3% for an estate with assets between $100,000 and $900,00. That is $15,000 for an estate consisting solely of a $500,000 condo or other real estate. This can be entirely avoided by deeding all assets, including the out-of-state assets to a revocable trusts.

For those of you interested, the full Florida statute can be found at Florida Statute 733.6171.

PS If you are already in this fix due to an inheritance from someone who did not have a trust, we have Florida attorneys we can refer to who just charge a reasonable hourly rate.

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Dwight Sowerby