If you’ve recently been named the executor of a friend or loved one’s will, you might be feeling overwhelmed. After all, you’ve inherited weighty legal responsibilities, and you may not even understand how to do the job.

Here are four responsibilities you can expect to receive when you become an executor and what you can do if you’re not sure how to proceed. 

#1) Asset Management

As an executor, it will fall to you to identify all of the deceased’s assets. This can sometimes be challenging. You’ll need to locate bank accounts, real property, recreational property such as boats and RVs, artwork, gold and silver, retirement accounts, and insurance policies. You’ll need to prepare a thorough inventory of those assets, and may need to have them appraised to handle them properly.

Your next step will be to secure and protect those assets. For example, you may need to store valuables, preserve vehicles somewhere secure, and maintain real property. Of course, you will also have to file probate so the court can learn of the existence of the assets, validate the will, and give you the legal ability to perform your duties as executor.

#2) Debt Management

You’ll need to find out what debts the deceased owes and take steps to pay them. This may mean paying anything from the deceased’s final credit card bill to filing the last tax return. 

You’ll need to notify all creditors, banks, and other parties that the deceased has died and that you are the executor so that you may move forward and so that debt ceases to accumulate.

#3) Property Distribution

Once you’ve paid the debts, you’ll need to determine who the heirs are and what their share of the estate is. 

You’ll then need to transfer property to those beneficiaries in a timely fashion and ensure all the transfers are properly documented.

#4) Represent the Estate

It’s your job to represent the estate in all legal manners, including claims, litigation, challenges to the will, and even probate itself. 

This can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be.

Get Help Today

The Probate Law Group can help guide you through the probate process and can help you meet all of your responsibilities as an executor. We can also help you in the event that you need to represent the estate in a legal matter.

With our help, you’ll meet your obligations and avoid any of the unpleasant consequences that can come with the improper handling of an estate. Contact us to discuss your case today.