When you are entitled to an inheritance, you have legal rights. Whether you are a surviving spouse, parent, or child, even when there is no will, you could be a beneficiary entitled to inherit a share of the estate, or specific property. When someone has made you a beneficiary under a will or trust, or you are a natural object of someone’s bounty, it is sometimes not easy to receive the inheritance you are entitled to. You could be entitled to an inheritance if you are a qualified beneficiary specifically named under a will or trust. You could also be entitled to an inheritance from a gift which passes by operation-of-law, such as on a joint bank account, or jointly-titled real estate. You can also be entitled to an inheritance when you have been named a beneficiary by a written designation under a life-insurance policy or retirement plan. If the owner of the life-insurance policy or retirement plan failed to name a beneficiary, a probate estate will usually need to be opened in order to transfer the assets intestate. When you are a named beneficiary under a will, you will receive your inheritance through a probate administration which is governed by the court. If you are a beneficiary, but not the fiduciary involved in the probate estate, you may want your own attorney, because the fiduciary may not be acting in your best interest but in the best interest of the Decedent. If you are entitled to an inheritance under a trust, there is usually not a court involved, and you may need an attorney to make sure the trustee is handling the trust correctly and is acting according to the governing instrument. If you believe you are a beneficiary of an inheritance, you may have rights you do not know about and have not asserted, such as being named the Personal Representative of the Estate, or in another fiduciary capacity, or to receive a copy of the governing instrument naming you as the beneficiary. If you believe you are entitled to an inheritance upon the death of a loved one, you will want to act quickly to assure your rights are protected. We have experienced probate, trust and estate lawyers available to discuss your potential inheritance and the rights you may be entitled to. Call us today to schedule your initial consultation to see if a Miami estate planning attorney at our firm can help you. It would be our privilege to take your call.