At the Fort Worth law firm of Grover Loudermilk, PLLC, our practice includes counsel and representation for estates and creditors in matters relating to collection of debts during probate and estate administration. We assist clients throughout Tarrant County, DFW, and surrounding counties with probate collections.
Our practice focuses primarily on legal matters relating to Texas probate and estates. Much of our work is courtroom-based, involving issues like complex creditor matters, complicated estate administrations, and contested estates and guardianships. Our experience in probate collections includes defending estates against creditor claims and asserting claims on behalf of a creditor.
We assist individuals, as well as banks and other professional and corporate fiduciaries. Many clients come to us through referrals from other attorneys, which demonstrates our reputation in the legal community for providing exceptional service in probate and estate matters.
Our background includes both court service and private practice experience. The co-founders of the firm, attorneys Mike Grover and Bob Loudermilk, served for three years as staff attorneys at Tarrant County Probate Court No. 2, working on matters relating to estates, wills, trusts, probate, and guardianships. Both lawyers also have extensive probate and estate experience in private practice.
Our credentials and experience set us apart and position us uniquely well to provide probate collection services to our clients.
Our counsel and representation for executors and administrators in matters relating to probate and estate administration includes assessment of all claims filed against the estate and defense against claims in appropriate circumstances. We also accept other clients who require representation in claim proceedings, particularly in cases involving legally and factually complex creditor claims.
The Texas Estates Code governs creditor claims against an estate during probate and administration. Other Texas laws and court decisions may apply as well, depending on the specific situation.
The relevant Estates Code provisions are extremely complex. Strict rules and timelines apply to assertion of a claim. To complicate matters even more, different rules apply to asserting claims in an independent administration than apply to making a claim in a dependent administration.
Even if a creditor obtained judgment before death or has a pending collection action, the creditor must pursue the claim under the Estates Code after the decedent’s death. If the assets of an estate are limited and insufficient to pay all claims against an estate, Texas law requires payment according to a priority classification system. In any specific case, the process for pursuing a claim depends on a number of factors, including whether the claim is liquidated or unliquidated, unsecured or secured, and whether the claim is for monetary payment or another form of payment.
In most situations, creditors of an estate cannot access non-probate assets, such as assets with designated beneficiaries. However, there are provisions in the Estates Code under which a creditor may be able to reach non-probate assets in limited circumstances. Specific statutory requirements apply to these situations.
A creditor unfamiliar with the Estates Code provisions — or one who misinterprets or misapplies those rules — risks losing the ability to assert the claim and recover the underlying debt. The complexity of Texas laws affecting probate collections requires representation by an attorney knowledgeable about the law and process and experienced in handling collection of a debt of a decedent or estate.
Our experience at Grover Loudermilk includes representing creditors in pursuing a claim, as well as representing estates in collection proceedings. We have successfully procured payment on a claim for creditors of estates and successfully defended estates against claims.
Our achievements representing clients on both sides of probate collection issues attests to our skill in handling these matters. Our reputation for success often results in referrals from other attorneys who do not handle contested or complex creditor claims.
From our Fort Worth office, Grover Loudermilk attorneys assist estates and creditors with all aspects of probate collections. We are experienced in handling probate collections and claims involving complex court proceedings and complicated circumstances. To request additional information or schedule a consultation, please call us at 817.730.9300 or use our online contact form.