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The duties of an executor

On Behalf of | Dec 3, 2021 | Estate Administration & Probate |

If you have been named the executor of someone’s will in Washington, you can benefit from learning more about the duties of an executor. This person has the legal responsibility of sorting out any outstanding financial obligations and ensuring that the remaining assets are properly distributed to the heirs. State laws vary, but the executor is typically an immediate member of the family as a sibling, parent, child, or spouse.

Understanding the executor position

Managing an estate could involve hundreds of tasks that take an executor over to a year to complete. The executor may require the assistance of a lawyer and an accountant, the cost of which is covered by the estate. The specific duties required of the executor are determined by the complexity of the estate. The executor is tasked with locating, managing, and protecting the assets while they move through the next process.

Becoming the executor

The executor benefits from having direct knowledge of the will maker’s wishes. Once a person has appointed an executor, the two should discuss the estate administration duties in further detail. The two should begin to compile a list of financial assets, account numbers, passwords, and other important details. The executor is also responsible for planning and managing the funeral. The executor is required to obtain copies of the will and death certificate to file them in probate court.

Acting as the executor

The executor must also inform financial institutions and government agencies of the death. With all the tasks involved, most executors need a reliable record-keeping system. The executor also notifies any beneficiaries named in the will about their inheritance. The executor must set up a separate bank account for the estate for paying off debtors, creditors, and taxes. The executor is also responsible for representing the estate in court.

The executor of a will has many duties. All these tasks help make sure an estate is organized and dissolved properly according to the deceased’s wishes and the law.