What Does an Executor of a Will Do?
Will Executor Lawyer Philadelphia, PA
When you have been assigned as a will executor it can come with a lot of responsibilities and duties. When someone chooses you to be their executor it can be an honor, but it also has its obligations. You should understand the role that you are accepting since it can be a lot to take on. A will executor will be the person who will be distributing the deceased person’s property and arranging for payment of estate debts and expenses.
A will executor will be legally responsible for the deceased’s finances to make sure that debts and taxes are paid and whatever remains will be distributed to the heirs. Depending on the state that you reside in there can be some requirements of who can serve as an executor, but usually, an executor is someone close to the family such as spouses, children, parents, and siblings. Again, depending on state laws, a will executor can receive payment for the duties they will be faced with, but oftentimes, if the executor is close to the family they often don’t ask to be compensated.
Some duties that a will executor can be faced with include:
- Getting a copy of the will and filing it with the local probate court. One of the main responsibilities of an executor is to locate, read, and understand the will. The will needs to be filed with the probate court even if probate isn’t necessary. Having the will helps determine who inherits the property.
- Notify banks, credit card companies, and government agencies of the death of the decedent. These companies and organizations will need to be notified immediately after the death, especially the Social Security Administration.
- Determine what kind of probate is necessary. Probate isn’t always necessary, however, there can be some inheritance laws that can facilitate the passing of certain properties without probate. Speaking with a will executor lawyer can help determine if probate is necessary or not. If probate is required that would mean you will be required to file a petition with the court to be appointed an executor, which will require a lawyer’s assistance.
- Set up a bank account for any incoming funds and to pay any ongoing bills. Sometimes a decedent will be owed money such as incoming paychecks and you will need an account that can hold that income. An executor will also need to pay attention to mortgage, utilities, and other bills that will need to be paid throughout the probate process.
There are so many more duties and responsibilities that will be expected from a will executor.
If you would like to explore more information, reach out to a Philadelphia, PA will executor lawyer from a law firm like Klenk Law. They will be able to answer any of your questions and concerns about estate planning.