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Wills & Probate

What if there are not enough assets in the estate to pay all of the decedent’s debts?

Obviously there will not be any inheritance to the heirs or beneficiaries, who receive assets only if all debts are paid. Florida law has a stated priority of claims, in which some claims (such as funeral expenses and final medical bills) come ahead of others. Most important in this day of “living trusts,” Florida law allows the creditors to reach assets of the decedent which were placed in certain types of trusts, and requires those trustees to use trust assets if necessary for estate expenses and claims.

Regardless even in that situation, a lawyer should eb contacted to see if an estate may be of benefit to the family.