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Should you be the executor of an estate?

On Behalf of | Aug 2, 2022 | blog, estate administration & probate |

Serving as the executor of an estate comes with a lot of responsibility. You must research what you need to do as the executor in Indiana to have a better idea of whether it’s right for you. Be honest with your loved ones so that they can appoint someone who is able to take on the task.

Are you good with deadlines?

There are deadlines to complete each task in closing an estate. If you’re not good at managing deadlines, then you may not want to serve as the executor of someone’s estate.

Are you willing to spend the time on handling the estate?

Closing an estate could be a time-consuming process, especially if the decedent doesn’t have good organization skills. You might find yourself having to list their assets and debts on your own and searching for assets that you’re struggling to locate. If you work long hours or you barely get time to yourself, then you may decide that it’s best for you to decline an offer to serve as executor of someone’s estate.

Impatient beneficiaries

It’s possible that some of the beneficiaries won’t be patient and understanding as you go through the probate process. They might make a fuss about not receiving their assets quickly enough. You must consider whether you could handle a potentially difficult beneficiary.

Potential lawsuits

Fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries comes with probate administration. Thus, a beneficiary could sue you if they think you made a mistake while handling the estate. Be prepared to hire an attorney to assist you in correctly completing the necessary tasks in closing an estate. You could use money from the estate to pay for legal help.

Although you may feel flattered that someone has asked you to serve as their estate administrator, you should consider the risks and downsides of this role before agreeing. Don’t allow a feeling of guilt to cause you to commit to something that you know you aren’t capable of doing. Testators could choose a company that handles estate administration if they aren’t able to find a loved one able to serve.