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What are the responsibilities of an executor?

Dealing with the death of a loved one can be difficult enough with the emotions that come with losing someone special. However, the emotional toils can pale in comparison to the responsibilities one might have as an executor to a person’s estate. Depending on your place in life and your level of care in your loved one’s life, it may be difficult to understand what is expected of an executor.

As such, this week’ post will highlight some of the basic expectations of an executor.

Finding assets to be distributed – Even when a person dies with a will intact, all of their assets may not be obviously known. As such, the executor is charged with finding assets so that they may be properly distributed to heirs and beneficiaries.

Maintaining property before its distribution – The executor is also responsible for ensuring that the property included in the estate is not damaged, lost or otherwise disposed of before it is distributed.

Locating people who were named in the will – Chances are that some people in the will may not know that they are beneficiaries and stand to inherit property in the estate, and they may not have been in contact with the deceased before they passed. As such, the executor may also have to locate those people and inform them.

Determining if probate court is necessary – Depending on the substance of the estate, this decision may already be made.

In handling these tasks, it is helpful to have an experienced estate administration attorney who knows the system and can help an executor. 

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