The executor is named in the will as the individual responsible for distributing the assets of the estate, according to William R. Simon Jr. for SAN DIEGO LAW FIRM. Personal representative refers to the executor or administrator. The administrator is appointed by the probate court when no executor is named in the will.Continue Reading
Regardless of whether the estate is administered by an executor or administrator, the duties are the same, explains Simon. The personal representative must gather the estate's assets; pay any debts and taxes; and distribute the remainder to those entitled to inherit. The personal representative distributes this money to beneficiaries. Beneficiaries are individuals or organizations specifically named in the will. There can be one or more beneficiaries entitled to receive various monies or property. Common examples of beneficiaries include family members, friends, charitable organizations and churches.
When someone dies without naming a beneficiary, the assets of the estate are given to the heir or heirs, notes Simon. The determination of who the heirs are and how much they receive depends on state inheritance laws. Generally speaking, preference is given to spouses and children. If there are no spouses or children, preference is given to other family members. These individuals are referred to as heirs because they are entitled to the estate's assets under state inheritance laws.Learn more about Financial Planning
Beneficiaries of a will can attempt to remove the executor of an estate by hiring an attorney and filing a complaint with the probate court, explains AllLaw. Each state has its own estate laws, so the acceptable legal grounds for removal and the process the beneficiaries must follow differs from state to state.Full Answer >
Generally, executor or trustee compensation for administering an estate or trust is set at around 1 percent of the total value of the assets, according to FreeAdvice. Absent a compensation agreement established in the will or trust document, the fee schedule for administration is typically set by state law.Full Answer >
The executor of a will collects the assets of an estate, pays outstanding debts and taxes, and ensures that those named in the will receive the property that the decedent specified they should have, according to DoYourOwnWill.com. The executor may also oversee investments of the estate.Full Answer >
A probate estate is the total of all assets owned by a person at the time of his death as stipulated in his will. A probate court must prove a will is genuine through a process called probate administration, as explained by For Dummies.Full Answer >