What Are the Responsibilities of an Executor of a Will?

What Are the Responsibilities of an Executor of a Will?

October 24, 2022

Executors have a number of duties depending on the complexity of the deceased person’s financial and family circumstances. In the most straightforward of cases, as most are, the job of executor can be broken down into three major areas; personal affairs, will and distribution, and ongoing affairs.

Personal Affairs

There are many connections, obligations, responsibilities, and associations we develop throughout our lives. When those days are done, however, someone needs to inform any active links to people, businesses, and organizations.

It is also important that any remaining balances, overages, or other account concerns get settled. Those responsibilities, of course, fall on the shoulders of the executor of the will. However, handling a person’s financial affairs after death is only part of the job.

Will and Distribution

This is easily the role most commonly associated with the executor of the will. An executor hiring a lawyer isn’t uncommon, but barring any disputes isn’t a requirement or necessary. In cases where the will is laid out in black and white, the executor’s responsibility is to announce the wishes of the deceased per their will.

Those distributions can be whatever the deceased chooses, often wealth, property, or personal effects (sometimes of considerable value). The need for an executor hiring a lawyer would typically only arise if there was a dispute or some complication, such as the verbiage of the will.

However, some of the affairs of the deceased don’t lie in repose with them. The executor is also charged with taking care of any ongoing affairs of the deceased too.

Ongoing Affairs

Certain accounts and affairs aren’t immediately settled once we pass. The executor is the person who will file the final income tax return, reporting from the beginning of that tax year until the date of death.

Any funds owed to the deceased will need to go somewhere. In this case, the executor will set up an estate account. Dividends from stocks or profit-sharing checks, for example, would be deposited here.

If You Need Legal Help

There are times when legal counsel can be helpful, or dare we even say necessary, when complex issues arise. From a person’s financial affairs after death to disputes over the will, legal help can make it easier for everyone.

Another good reason to consider seeking a personal attorney for executor concerns is a personal choice. If you don’t have a heart for the many responsibilities that fall on the shoulders of the executor, it may be wise to consider seeking legal assistance. 

Contact Ruben J. Padron, PA if you have questions or would like to discuss the role of an executor in more detail. Serving the Miami area since 2005, contact us today to schedule an appointment.


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