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Make sure to understand the duties of an executor before probate

When a British Columbia resident with a will dies, certain tasks must be completed in order to close the estate. Those responsibilities fall to the person named as executor. Failing to complete the tasks -- and complete them properly -- could cause issues for that person. For this reason, it would be a good idea to understand the duties to be carried about prior to starting the probate.

The first part of the job involves gathering information, paperwork, and physical and digital assets. Locating and notifying all of the individual's heirs, beneficiaries and creditors should happen at the same time. This may take some time. The executor will need to pay all of the valid debts, filing necessary tax returns, cancel charge cards and subscriptions, handle all mail and take care of other personal matters of the deceased.

During the probate, the executor takes possession of and protects all of the assets of the deceased at death. It may be necessary to sell certain assets. When the time comes, the remaining assets will need to be legally transferred to those listed in the will. It is not hard to see that probate requires a significant amount of paperwork and time.

Making a mistake in this capacity could open up the individual to personal liability. The heirs and beneficiaries could attempt to have the executor removed as well. Fortunately, it is not necessary for an executor to go through the probate process alone. A British Columbia lawyer experienced in this area of law could prove invaluable.

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