When a person dies their estate must be managed. The process of gathering assets, paying debts of the estate, and distributing the estate are carried out by whoever is the estate executor. This process is called estate administration. If you are an executor of an estate then you want to ensure that you have the proper legal guidance to help you manage the estate. The Law Office of Nicholas D. Ward can help you navigate this difficult time. There are many questions regarding estate administration that you should consider such as:
• So now you are named a Personal Representative, What do you do and when? What are your obligations?
• Do you have the original, executed Will? Where is it? How can you get it out of a safe deposit box?
• Is the will sufficiently clear to provide a road map or is there some ambiguity that needs addressing?
• Do you know the identity of the decedent’s heirs? Do you have addresses for the estate’ beneficiaries?
• Can you find all the decedent’s assets and insurance policies?
• Are there difficult assets to value? How are you going to sell or otherwise dispose of them?
• If a family member held a power of attorney for the decedent, can the family member properly account for the funds expended under the power of attorney?
• Have you found the decedent’s income tax returns for the last few years? Who prepared them?
• Have you identified all the decedent’s creditors so as to be able to take advantage of the short statute of limitations on their claims by giving them Notice of your appointment?
• If the decedent transferred assets to some family members in recent years, are these transfers to be treated as advances on the inheritance or gifts without regard to previous gifts?
• Should you sell the decedent’s holdings in securities or distribute the securities in satisfaction of a legacy? Are you protected if the distributee wants the securities and then the market goes South before distribution has been effected?
Call The Law Office of Nicholas D. Ward today to schedule an appointment, 202-289-6640!