Last Will and TestamentWhy is a succession needed if there is a Last Will and Testament saying who gets what assets? People often assume if there is a Last Will and Testament, that there is nothing else that needs to be done and succession is not necessary. However, under Louisiana law, a Last Will and Testament is merely the instructions of what the decedent wants to happen upon his or her death.

A Will Is Not Enough

The Last will and Testament itself does not transfer ownership of any assets. In order for the assets to be transferred to the people designated in the Last Will and Testament, a succession is necessary. This process starts with probating the Last Will and Testament and having the court recognize that it is valid. Once the will is determined to be valid, then a Petition for Possession can be filed requesting the court to transfer ownership of the assets to the people designated in the Last Will and Testament.

If this process is successful, a Judgment of Possession will be issued by the court that serves to transfer ownership of the assets. The Judgment of Possession, not the Last Will and Testament, is what is necessary to transfer inheritance to heirs after someone passes away in Louisiana.

We Can Help Guide You Through The Probate Process

From determining if the Will is valid, to probating it with the Court, our probate and estate attorneys are here to help you through the process. Contact us today if you need assistance.  We help hundreds of families throughout Louisiana every year with estate legal matters. 

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