What Is an Executor Required to Do?
When you create your estate plan, you name someone as an executor or executoress to handle the administration of your estate. This individual has a fiduciary duty to the estate and to its beneficiaries, meaning they must act in accordance with the wishes of the will and other estate planning documents and remain in communication with these beneficiaries over the course of estate administration.
An executor is responsible for managing the entire administration of a deceased person’s estate. The effort and time involved will vary with regard to the size and complexity of the estate, but important duties must be carried out, such as finding documents, applying for probate, notifying interested parties of the existence of the estate, managing the deceased’s property until it can be used to pay off creditors, address other debts or distribute it to beneficiaries, pay any valid claims from creditors, file tax returns, distribute assets to beneficiaries and keep accurate records.
It can be very difficult for someone who has never served in the role of executor before to understand each component that is required of them. Furthermore, they must be a good communicator to stay in contact with all of your beneficiaries over the duration of estate administration.
Think carefully about who in your personal or professional life may be an appropriate individual to appoint as an executor. You are not limited to choosing someone in your family as an executor and may choose someone else based on your perception of their performance and abilities. Make sure this individual is comfortable in serving as an executor as well and understands the requirements and where to find important documents and materials for your estate.
Need help picking or formally naming your Virginia executor? Contact our office today to learn more.