The loss of a loved one – especially a spouse or parent – is incredibly difficult. Unfortunately, it is something almost everyone faces at least once in life. Estate planning is useful for preventing disputes when a person passes away. However, whatever is not accounted for in a will or estate plan goes into probate. Probate is a process of holding assets before beneficiaries receive them. This helps ensure that the right people receive the right assets, and also that the decedent does not have unpaid debts. Even in cases where a will is perfectly executed, probate comes into play. In the instance of inheritance, for example – the beneficiaries do not receive payment in full until a certain number of months pass in accordance with state law.