If you are named executor of estate in someone’s will, you need to be aware that serving as an executor is a big deal. Being executor isn’t just a nice title that is given to you in order to honor the relationship you had with the person who died. The deceased person, called the decedent, entrusts the executor with a tremendous amount of responsibility and that executor has to fulfill all of the obligations imposed upon him or her by the will and by New York State law.
You should think carefully about whether you really want to be executor of estate or not. If you do, an experienced attorney can assist you throughout the entirety of the process of probating a will in order to make your job easier. If you do not wish to be executor of an estate, you can decline and the court will appoint someone who is hopefully better able to fulfill the many duties that an executor has.
The Law Office of Michael Robinson, P.C. can provide assistance to those who have been named executor of estate. Our legal team can explain your duties and can be there for you at every step of fulfilling those obligations if you decide that you do want to be an executor. We can also provide information on how the probate process will unfold if you decline to serve as executor of an estate. Give us a call today to find out more about how our legal team can help you.
Should You Serve as Executor of Estate?
Whether or not you want to be executor of an estate is a big decision. If you do not agree, you could feel as though you are letting your friend or relative down after they entrusted you with the power to serve as executor.
However, if you do decide you want to serve as executor of an estate, you will have a fiduciary duty to ensure you protect an inheritance for heirs or beneficiaries and act on behalf of heirs. This is a huge responsibility that you will have to fulfill over an extended period of time, as it can take many months for the process of winding up the affairs of the estate to occur.
If you’re going to be executor of estate, you have to be prepared to file court paperwork, to go to court, to file tax returns, to facilitate an accounting of estate assets, and to manage all of the property that is a part of the probate estate. If you have doubts about whether you can handle doing all of the different things that are a part of serving as executor of an estate, you should strongly consider declining to take on the role.
What if You Don’t Want to be Executor of Estate?
If you don’t want to be executor of estate, you do not have to fulfill this obligation. You can decline to serve as executor. The court will simply appoint someone who can serve as estate administrator during the probate process. The estate administrator or personal representative can take on the task of probating the will and facilitating the transfer of assets.
There is nothing wrong with declining to be executor of estate if you are not confident that you can fulfill the many duties involved. You and the heirs or beneficiaries are better off having someone who can start in that role, complete all obligations during the probate process, and fulfill the responsibilities of executor throughout the entire process of settling the estate.
Getting Help from A Rochester Probate Lawyer
The Law Office of Michael Robinson, P.C. has provided assistance to many people who were named executor of estate so they could fulfill their obligations as executor and respect the wishes of the deceased. Our legal team can make the process of serving as executor of an estate as easy as possible by taking care of all of the legal issues on your behalf. We also offer assistance to those who do not want to be executor and we help to guide friends and family members of a deceased person through the probate process.
To find out more about the ways in which our legal team can assist you, give us a call at (585) 546-1734 or contact us online to talk with a Rochester probate lawyer. You can also join us for a free workshop to learn more about what the probate process entails under New York law. Call today to start getting smart legal advice that you need following a death.