I lost my dad, Michael Palley, when I was 14 years old. I thus learned, at a young age, what “probate” meant. Though he was an attorney we were not wealthy and, embarrassingly in hindsight, he had not done all he could to plan his estate before death. Not to get overly personal, but it’s interesting that he did not have a proper estate plan as he was an extremely intelligent person but he was also sick and thus knew he wouldn’t leave a full life. In fact, it was really the old story about the cobbler’s son as he had a handwritten will rather than a properly prepared living trust. Losing a beloved member of a family is sad news to the family but leaving behind an improperly prepared plan can create more hardship. We were lucky that his estate was simple but the costs and delays that were created could have easily been avoided with a properly funded California revocable living trust. Hire a California Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate law for all of your estate planning and probate needs in California.