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What to expect as an estate executor

On Behalf of | Sep 1, 2023 | Estate Planning |

When you get named an estate executor, you step into a role filled with important responsibilities.

Understanding the ins and outs of this position is key, especially when fulfilling the desires of a loved one.

Understand your role

A family member serves as an executor in around 80% of estate plans. If a loved one chooses you to serve in that role, it means you will handle their affairs after their death. This involves specific tasks that you must carry out diligently.

Gather and manage assets

Your primary duty as an estate executor is to identify, gather and manage the assets left behind by the deceased individual. These assets might include things like property, bank accounts, investments and personal belongings. Your responsibility is to preserve and, if needed, sell or distribute these assets according to the instructions in the will.

Settle debts and expenses

Before distributing assets to beneficiaries, you must settle any debts and expenses related to the estate. This means finding any outstanding bills, loans or taxes and using the estate’s funds to pay them off. You need to handle these matters responsibly and promptly.

Navigate the probate process

You will have to navigate the probate process, which involves legally validating the deceased person’s will. This includes submitting the will to the court, proving its authenticity and following the court’s guidance.

Communicate with beneficiaries

Keeping beneficiaries in the loop is vital. You must communicate clearly with them, updating them on the progress of estate administration and keeping them informed about important decisions and timelines.

As an estate executor, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed. Approaching your responsibilities with a clear understanding of the tasks at hand may help you navigate them effectively.