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High Conflict Families and the Role of a Las Vegas Probate Attorney

The death of a family member is always a trying time. Emotions are running high and the initial shock is still present for many family members. Unfortunately, despite the emotional turmoil, legal issues still need to be addressed. If the deceased has left a will, it will make things a bit easier. However, members of the family can contest the will. Legally the process of handing ownership of property to another party after death is called probate.

Probate Courts and Property Disputes

The complexities of the process has spawned the creation of special courts, named probate courts, to handle the process. The court supervises the transfer process. They make sure that all debts are paid off before the property is distributed to other parties. Any dispute of ownership is handled by the probate judge and attorneys.

This entire process can cause lots of tension and arguments between family members. Members may accuse each other of altering the will or manipulating the deceased into changing the will. Families can also contest the presence of certain outside parties such as lovers and illegitimate children in the will. In the Nevada area, a trusted Las Vegas probate attorney can help you navigate the probate process and get the settlement you deserve.


Many Estate holders designate someone as a trustee that handles the distribution of assets to beneficiaries. A living trust is a physical document the estate owner drafts before his or her death. They designate someone as the trustee and the name of the person is written in the document. Some trustees are aware of their role before the death and others find out afterwards.

Usually, trusts are created to deter infighting and eliminate the probate courts. However, not all beneficiaries or non-beneficiaries will be happy with the actions of the trustee and probate court involvement is always an option. Family members can file a formal motion with the courts and have the will contested.

Conflict Resolution

A probate attorney not only plays the role of legal professional, they also work as a conflict resolution specialist. This is one of the side characteristics of the job that the attorney has to perform. Inheritance disputes release lots of family issues, secrets and tension. It can be hard for both sides to think logically amidst such an emotionally trying time.

The probate attorney works as a mediator between both sides to bring the facts to the forefront. The goal of the probate attorney is to make sure property and funds are distributed as the estate owner sees fit, but also respecting legal ramifications. For example, the law dictates that a certain percentage of property automatically goes to the spouse. An angry family member can claim that the owner was coerced into making certain decisions or the owner was mentally incompetent during the will’s creation. Inflammatory claims such as this will cause major conflict and can only be resolved through the court’s involvement.

Tanko Law, Your Las Vegas Probate Attorney

Brian C. Tanko is a licensed attorney, public accountant and fraud examiner. He works to help clients with all facets of the probate and estate planning process. For estate owners, Tanko Law Las Vegas can help you create a trust and draft a will. Tanko Law can also help you set up a payment plan for the estate taxes. The astute Las Vegas probate attorney and accountant understands the financial and emotional implications of estate planning and is always here to help, even making house calls for clients truly in need. Contact your Las Vegas probate attorney, Brian C. Tanko, today to schedule a consultation.

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