Probate may be one of those legal terms you think you should know, but its actual definition escapes you. People talk about a will or an estate going "through probate," which sounds easy enough until you're faced with the daunting process yourself. If you have lost a family member, reading and interpreting their will is not easy, never mind following its legal implications; and, if there is no Will, then life can be even more complicated. So what is probate? Can it be avoided? Is it a good thing or a bad thing?