A Law Career

Are You An Executor? 3 Things The Estate Administration Attorney Will Help You Do

by Ruby Mckinney

Were you named the executor of an estate? If yes, you have a greater legal responsibility to protect and administer it. You are also expected to pay the estate taxes and handle everything else associated with the estate to avoid family disputes. Moreover, you should ensure you distribute the assets according to the will left behind and applicable laws. Unfortunately, you may make mistakes that could lead to increased tax liability or even expose the estate to litigation. But even as you administer the estate, it's vital to involve an estate administration attorney to help you do it properly. The attorney helps you do the following three things.

Administer the Estate As Per the Deceased's Will

As an executor, you need to be careful when administering the estate. A lot of problems may arise when you do it without following the terms of the will. Unfortunately, it's possible to overlook some terms and administer the estate wrongly. But this is unlikely to happen when the executor works closely with the estate administration attorney. The attorney helps them find the most effective administration approach. They ensure the estate is administered according to the deceased's wishes and not according to how the executor would have wanted. Moreover, the attorney helps the executor avoid a situation where a beneficiary gets disappointed and files a claim.

Interpret the Will

A will is critical during estate administration. It's usually a binding legal document that outlines how the estate will be administered or distributed. Unfortunately, many executors are willing to administer the estate according to the deceased's wishes, but they are sometimes unable to interpret the will. Interpreting the will and its terms may sometimes be difficult without the help of an estate administration attorney. The attorney looks at the will from the legal perspective. A will may have certain terms that the executor may not easily interpret. For this reason, the executor should involve the attorney to help them interpret the will and administer the estate without violating any of the terms.

Close the Estate Properly

It's one thing to administer the estate, and it's another thing to ensure it's properly closed. Most executors distribute the assets according to the deceased's will but make mistakes when closing the estate. The estate can be closed in several ways to avoid problems. First, the executor may file a family settlement agreement. Here, the executor assures the court that all the beneficiaries are satisfied with the estate administration process and have received their rightful share. Secondly, you could close the estate through a court accounting process. In this case, the judge assesses and approves the distribution process. And since estate closing is a legal process, it's good to let an estate administration attorney guide you.