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The Role of an Executor in Probate

The role of an executor for a deceased person’s estate is a challenging one. It requires a lot of preparedness and qualification, mainly if one deals with a complicated estate plan or a wealthy descendant. Reading the guide to Wills and Estate by the American Bar Association is an excellent start to practicing your role as an executor.

A probate executor has many responsibilities, ranging from assessing and distributing the descendant’s finances to serving as a legal personal representative by managing the assets according to the will and trust’s terms. Most importantly, an executor plays a crucial role in the estate planning and distribution process by paying the descendant’s debt and remaining taxes.

The mismanagement of estate funds can lead to an immense loss for trustees and beneficiaries. Therefore, it’s critical to hire an estate planning lawyer to facilitate a reliable executor’s appointment.

Following are some of the essential roles and responsibilities of a probate executor.

Submit the Will in Court

Firstly, an executor locates and studies the deceased person’s will and tries to grasp each section to move to the next step. He then submits the will to the probate court, which is critical in opening an estate plan and distributing the chosen beneficiaries’ finances and assets.

The executor also collaborates with attorneys to decide whether the descendant’s securities and the estate should be sold.

Identify the Assets & Pay Liabilities

When the executor receives the court’s approval on the will, he gathers all the essential paperwork related to the descendant’s assets and liabilities to ensure they all exist according to the will’s terms.

Some of these financial possessions and paperwork include debit and credit card statements, real estate holding agreements, outstanding credit reports, insurance documents, and other legal or financial papers.

Pay the Required Taxes

Apart from property distribution among beneficiaries, an executor also manages the deceased person’s taxes. He assesses the person’s previous tax payment record to determine the taxes payable and notifies the tax office to establish a tax return policy.

However, if the descendant has a property with a very high value, an estate tax may still apply to it. An executor may also have to prepare an income tax return in this case.

Close the Estate

When the executor assesses and decides all the stated shares for respective heirs on the will, he submits a written report to the court to notify it of all the procedures. He distributes the funds, properties and other financial assets after seeking approval from the judge.

Does the idea of creating an estate plan daunt you? Let the Reno estate planning lawyers at Kalicki Collier assist you throughout the process, from appointing an executor to protecting your assets. Request a consultation today!

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