There are many executor duties which must be fulfilled by the executor of an estate after a death has occurred. Executors have many important responsibilities and they have a fiduciary duty to fulfill their obligations throughout the probate process. If you are asked to serve as executor of an estate, you should be aware of what to expect and of the many obligations that you are taking on before you agree to serve as executor.
Zimmer Law Firm can provide you with invaluable assistance fulfilling your role as executor of an estate. Our legal team knows how the probate process works in Ohio and we have provided representation to many executors. We also represent heirs or beneficiaries whose loved one has passed away and who wants to make certain the executor of a will does his or her job properly during the estate administration process. Give us a call to find out more about how an Ohio probate lawyer can help fulfill executor duties during the probate process.
Five Executor Duties
While an executor of an estate has many important obligations, five key executor duties include:
- Filing the appropriate paperwork with the court. If the deceased died in Cincinnati or anywhere within Hamilton County, you can obtain initial estate administration forms online that you will have to submit to the probate court. There may be many different kinds of paperwork that you are obligated to submit to the court during the probate process and an experienced attorney should guide you through completing the required forms.
- Providing notice to appropriate parties. Heirs or beneficiaries need to be notified of the death and of the probate proceedings. Creditors also must be provided with notice and given the opportunity to make appropriate claims on the estate.
- Making an accounting of estate assets. It is up to you to determine what assets the estate owns. You are also going to have to find out if anyone owes money to the estate. You should have a complete and accurate accounting of all property which is part of the estate so the new owners of the property can be properly determined and so an assessment can be made regarding estate taxes.
- Taking care of the property of the deceased. As executor of an estate, one of your most important obligations is to make certain that the property of the deceased is taken care of appropriately. This is one of the most important executor duties because you have an obligation to manage the estate assets, including property and investments, in a way that preserves their value.
- Facilitating the transfer of assets. You have to take care of the official process of transferring the assets of the deceased to heirs or beneficiaries who inherited them. This can mean changing deeds and changing titles.
These are just five of many duties that an executor of an estate has to fulfill. You are also going to have to file appropriate tax paperwork, pay any taxes due, make an effort to collect any debts owed to the deceased person, respond if the will is contested, and much more. The obligations imposed on an executor of an estate are significant and you will need to make certain you fulfill them appropriately to protect the inheritance that the deceased has left for loved ones.
You do not have to serve as executor of an estate just because a deceased person named you as executor in his will. If you do not feel up to fulfilling these duties, you can opt to decline and the court will appoint an estate administrator to fulfill the role that an executor of an estate would normally fulfill. While you may want to fulfill the wishes of the deceased, and a probate lawyer will help you to do that, you should not feel obligated to serve as executor if you do not feel confident that you can carry out all of the duties that will be required of you.
Getting Help from An Ohio Probate Lawyer
Zimmer Law Firm has the skills, knowledge and experience necessary to help families going through the probate process in Ohio. To discover more about what is involved in the probate process and what your role is within this process, join us for a free seminar. You can also give us a call at 513.721.1513 to talk with an Ohio probate lawyer who can assist with fulfilling executor duties or who can help you with whatever your role is in the probate process. Call now so our legal team can begin providing you with the personalized advice you need.