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Steps to take after the death of a parent?

Vincentown, NJ |
Filed under: Probate Probate court

My mother died a few days ago. She had her will made with a lawyer, making my sister the head person. She asked for my help. Is there a web site or a place where we can find the steps to take on our own. We realize that eventually we'll need to see a lawyer, but neither of us have the money to do it now and to see one repeatedly. What steps can we take on our own to make it easier when we do see a lawyer?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. I would suggest that you contact the Surrogate's office in the county where your mother passed away. The Surrogate is the part of the Court system that deals with estates and probate. The Surrogate's offices usually are very helpful, and will be able to assist you in obtaining information, getting forms, etc. Obviously, a lawyer can help you do this directly.

    NOTE: This answer is made is for advisory and/or educational purposes only. By using or participating in this site, or posting a question and obtaining an answer, you understand that no attorney-client relationship is being established between you and the answering attorney, and there is no attorney-client privilege between you and the attorney. You should consult with a licensed professional attorney in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. The information provided in this answer is designed to be general in nature and is based on the facts stated in your question, and might change based on further information.


  2. I co-authored a book on precisely this topic "Guiding Those Left Behind in New Jersey - Settling the Affairs of Your Loved One" While I doubt its available in your local bookstore it can still be ordered from the publisher. There is a link to the publisher in my Avvo profile.

    Additionally, many attorneys will offer a free initial consultation to help you determine if you need any ongoing legal help with the estate or if you can handle it on your own.

    Very truly yours,

    Ed Smeltzer

    NOTE: This answer was prepared for educational purposes only. By using this site you understand and agree that there is no attorney client relationship or confidentiality between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in the subject area in your jurisdiction and with whom you have an attorney client relationship. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific factual or legal circumstance described in the question or omitted from the question.

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