According to About.com, the executor of an estate is paid a percentage fee based on the laws of the state of residence and the amount of money in the estate. Bankrate lists the industry standard at approximately 3 percent of the estate's value.
A flat rate, bequest or percentage amount may be written into the will of the deceased to cover the executor fees, notes About.com. The will should be consulted first. If no provisions exist, the probate court generally decides the percentage amount based on state law and the value of the estate. In addition to the executor's fee, he may also be entitled to reimbursement for out of pocket expenses and additional fees for extraordinary services, such as liquidation of the estate for disbursement.