When you think about an estate representative, you may look upon the role as a somewhat ceremonial, honorary one. In reality, there are many different important real-world tasks that the executor must handle to make sure that your wishes become reality.
The administration of an estate does not happen in a vacuum. After your passing, the executor must admit the will to probate, and the probate court will supervise the administration of the estate.
The executor will be required to contact creditors, and final debts must be paid, including taxes. The executor may have to post a bond in some instances, and an estate bank account will typically be opened.
The property that comprises the estate must be identified and inventoried. This property will ultimately be prepared for distribution to the heirs in accordance with your wishes, and this could require appraisals and liquidation.
When the court closes the estate, the executor can distribute assets to the heirs.
Qualities of an Effective Executor
As you can see from the above, the executor must handle some potentially high-level business oriented tasks. You want to select someone who has the experience and expertise that it takes to conduct the business of the estate effectively.
A high level of honesty and integrity is required, and there should be no conflicts of interest. The age of the person that you choose is a factor, because longevity could be a concern, and you should take geographic location into consideration as well.
Given the fact that the executor may be devoting a great deal of time and effort to the administration of the estate, you should discuss everything with your nominee in advance to be sure that the individual in question is willing to take on the responsibility.
Communication skills are also important, because the executor will be the point of contact for anyone who is conducting business with the estate. These matters can be sensitive when it comes to inheritors, other family members, and associates, so diplomacy, tact, and patience are very useful qualities.
We should point out the fact that you could use a professional fiduciary to act as the executor if you do not know anyone who would be a good candidate.
Take Direct Action
You should have a holistic understanding of the estate administration process when you are planning your estate. If you have questions, we can provide you with answers.
Our firm offers free consultations, and we would be glad to assist you. To set up an appointment, send us a message through our contact page: Indianapolis IN Estate Planning Attorneys.
Mr. Kraft assists clients primarily in the areas of estate planning and administration, Medicaid planning, federal and state taxation, real estate and corporate law, bringing the added perspective of an accounting background to his work.
Latest posts by Paul A. Kraft, Estate Planning Attorney (see all)
- If a Beneficiary Dies During Probate What Happens to the Inheritance? - September 18, 2019
- Is Your Power of Attorney Powerless? What to Do When a Third Party Won’t Honor an Agent’s Authority - September 11, 2019
- Are There Different Types of Special Needs Trusts? - September 4, 2019