Administrating a loved one’s estate: some challenges

On Behalf of | Sep 11, 2019 | Estate Administration & Probate |

Georgia residents may have decided to take on the role of executor of a deceased loved one’s estate, in which case they will need to know what sort of challenges they will face. First, an executor is in charge of identifying the estate’s assets, paying off debts, filing tax returns and distributing the estate to the heirs and beneficiaries.

Executors need to find out if the estate will have to go through probate. They will also need to address any complaints that may be made by unreasonable heirs. Copies of the death certificate will be required for certain tasks, so executors need to obtain these.

If the decedent was married, the spouses may have had a revocable trust, and this will need updating. Executors may put in themselves or an adult child to replace the decedent as co-trustee. The beneficiary and distribution provisions may need updating; some beneficiaries may need to be struck out for proving themselves unreliable, for instance.

Selling the decedent’s home will take some effort. The surviving spouse may desire to move to an assisted living facility. Executors may need to hire professional movers and organizers in addition to a real estate agent and perhaps an estate liquidator. Not-so-valuable items can be relegated to an estate sale. Changing a home’s title may be necessary.

There are many challenges with estate administration & probate, which is why those who have not planned their estate yet are encouraged to do so. It’s not a task that only the elderly should think about. One of the basics of estate planning is drawing up a will and any powers of attorney: forms that designate someone to handle an individual’s private affairs should that individual become incapacitated. A lawyer may provide advice and guidance during a consultation.

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