In Louisiana, the process wherein a deceased person's estate is settled is referred to as a succession, more commonly referred to as probate in other states.
A succession is either "testate" or "intestate." In a testate Succession, the deceased passed away with a valid Last Will and Testament. In an intestate Succession, the deceased did not leave a Last Will and Testament or the Last Will and Testament was invalid.
The succession must be opened in the parish where the deceased lived at the time of his or her death or if the deceased did not live in Louisiana at the time of death, then it can be opened in the parish where the deceased owned immovable property or where the decedent owned movable property, if no immovable property was owned by the decedent.
Immovable and movable property such as land, homes, vehicles, and bank accounts become part of the succession. Assets that go by beneficiary are not included in a succession. These can include life insurance, some retirement accounts, annuities and IRAs. In the event the Last Will and Testament conflicts with the beneficiary designations, the beneficiary designations will supersede the Last Will and Testament.
The actual division of the property depends on whether the succession is testate or intestate.
Losing a loved one is a difficult and stressful time. Do not let the succession process add to your distress; contact an experienced succession attorney today at DSG Law Office at 985.649.6390. We offer free consultations.