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Understand the roles of an estate executor

On Behalf of | Nov 21, 2017 | Blog |

A person who is named an estate executor has a considerable amount of work to do. This job isn’t always easy, but it is usually considered a great honor. Understanding the role of the executor can help people creating an estate plan to name one and it can help people who are given this responsibility an idea of what is to come.

Here are some points to know about the duties of an estate executor:

Can receive a fee

The executor isn’t due any proceeds of the estate. Instead, these individuals are paid a fee that is based on how complex and how large the estate is. Typically, the fees for this are set by the state.

It is also important to note that an executor doesn’t have to be a lawyer or similar expert. Instead, the person simply has to be able to work honestly and diligently to handle the estate.

Duties of the executor

The duties of an executor are sometimes difficult. The executor is supposed to find the assets and heirs of the estate. This can entail some digging since there could be some people who aren’t in contact with the family. There is also a chance that hidden assets might be part of the estate.

An estate executor is also responsible for handling the probate process. This including determining what filings are necessary with the probate court. In most cases, this means filing the will with the court even if there isn’t any need to probate it.

Handling the final affairs and financial matters for the estate is also necessary. The executor will have to start a bank account for the estate and determine what debts must be paid. Filing the final income tax return is also a duty of an estate executor.

Naming the executor

Some people might have an idea of who they want to name as the executor. It is usually a good idea to choose someone who is likely to outlive you and who will be able to handle the responsibility. You might want to choose someone who isn’t a close family member since the stress of your death might make it more difficult for these individuals to handle the duties.

Whether you are the person creating an estate plan or someone who is embarking on the estate administration process, you should ensure exactly what an executor needs to do. This can help you to formulate a plan and determine where to turn.