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Your responsibilities as the executor of an estate

On Behalf of | Oct 3, 2022 | estates, wills and probate litigation |

Serving as the executor of an estate is an important duty that involves many administrative tasks. The executor is in charge of carrying out the will and distributing the property of someone who passed away.

Understanding your responsibilities as an executor can help you carry out your obligations in a fair and organized manner.

Administrative duties

The executor is responsible for gathering, copying and filing important legal paperwork. You should also account for all the assets and debts connected to the estate, including investment accounts, real estate and life insurance. If the estate plan named multiple executors, you must coordinate with your co-executors and try to avoid disputes. Furthermore, as an executor, you must communicate with the beneficiaries throughout the process.

Distribution of assets

One of the primary duties of an executor is to distribute the estate’s assets to the appropriate heirs. In many cases, the estate plan details how to divide and distribute property among various beneficiaries. However, you can use your state’s succession laws if there is no will. As executor, you might also need to sell real estate and personal property and distribute the proceeds.

Special obligations

Every estate is unique, and executors often have additional duties. For example, if the estate must go through probate, the executor typically oversees the process. Additionally, as executor, you need to handle all debts and taxes linked to the estate. You also have to close the estate and any associated account.

Before you take on the role of executor of an estate, you should review the tasks you need to complete.