What steps or forms can I do to save $ on lawyer fees for probate. Seven siblings want to appoint me PR.
Real Estate Attorney
A probate proceeding will be required to either sell the home or have title of home transferred in equal shares to you and your siblings. When dealing with real estate, specific requirements must be met to transfer clear title and it is not recommended that you attempt to proceed on your own. The attorney assisting you will need complete name and address information for all siblings, will then need to prepare a document for each of them to sign authorizing you to petition for appointment as the Personal Representative. If all of the siblings agree that the property be sold as part of the probate, you can proceed to sell the property after your appointment. If you don't want to sell the property, other requirements have to be met. It's difficult to give general advice without you providing the attorney additional specific information regarding your mother and the history of your family, and also a discussion as to whether it's better to try and sell the property or just distribute it to the family members and sell it later. Pros and cons to each.
Estate Planning Attorney
Other ways to save money are to have all necessary documents for the attorney. Since attorneys will charge by the hour for probate, try to use as little of the attorneys time as possible. You want to bring all the abstracts and any other property information you have with you. The best thing to do is always in hindsight, and that would have been to avoid the probate altogether. I would have recommended either a Trust or a Transfer on Death Deed (depending on your mother's goals), to pass her real estate (and other assets) to her family without the cost or bother of probate. Best Wishes.