Mullen and Iannarone, P.C.
Serving the legal needs of corporations, individuals and
families of Suffolk County since 1972

The responsibilities of a will executor

New York residents who are named executors in wills may want more information concerning the winding down of an estate. When the testator dies, the executor assumes legal responsibility for resolving the decedent's outstanding financial obligations. In the event that the person named as executor declines the position, the court may appoint a replacement if the will makes no provision for an alternate executor.

Most testators choose an immediate family member or someone else close to them to serve as executor. Executors are entitled to financial compensation from the estate as determined by state law. Alternately, reasonable compensation might be determined by a probate court in some situations. However, many executors forego personal payment out of respect for their relationship to the deceased.

The funds needed to execute the will come from the estate regardless of family ties. The executor will use such monies to pay the estate's bills, taxes and court fees. The executor might also need to pay for the upkeep of a home or maintenance of other property pending disbursement. In addition to tracking down assets, ensuring that beneficiaries who are named in the will receive the property to which they are entitled is one of the executor's chief responsibilities.

Some executors may find the process to be straightforward, while others may need assistance in addressing complex issues concerning property , disputes or significant tax liability. These individuals may find it beneficial to seek help from an attorney who is practiced in the area of estate administration. A resource for legal information and advice as desired, the attorney could also handle the probate process in its entirety. The attorney, who is paid with proceeds from the estate, could ensure that the will is executed in strict adherence to the decedent's explicit wishes.

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