You Can Be a Good Executor of Your Loved One’s Will and Manage Your Own Life

You are in a very difficult situation. Prior to the death of your friend or relative, you led a very busy life. Your days were filled with work, with your family, and with your other activities. Even now, all of these things continue. You need to continue doing all of these things even as you mourn the loss of your friend or family member and even after you learn that you have been appointed as the executor of your loved one’s will.

How Are You Going to Balance it All?

The truth is that being an executor of a will takes time. It is your obligation as executor, to administer the estate, to protect the estate’s assets, and to protect the estate’s beneficiaries.

There are tasks that must be completed within specific deadlines, such as:

  • Obtaining a tax identification number.
  • Providing notice of death to the California Department of Health Services.
  • Notifying creditors of the person’s death.
  • Deciding whether to pay or disapprove of debts when notified of them by creditors.
  • Paying all applicable taxes.

These tasks will not wait if you are dealing with your own medical issues, if you have a busy time at work, if you are traveling, if you are caring for an aging parent, if you have young children, or if there are things in your life that make these deadlines difficult.

You Have Two Options

Nobody expects that an executor of a will has nothing else to do but to administer the will. Your loved one trusted you with this responsibility and it may be possible for you to manage your own life and honor your loved one’s wishes. Often, you can do this by contacting an experienced estate planning lawyer to help you administer the will.

Alternatively, there may be situations where you are simply unable to manage your own obligations and serve as executor. If, for example, you are currently sick or if you have moved out of state since the time the will was being created, then being the executor may be difficult for you and for the administration of the estate. Your loved one would likely not have wanted you to suffer or deal with the stress of administering his or her estate in these types of situations and your loved one probably named successor executors just in case you were unable to serve. If serving as executor significantly interferes with your life, then you should talk to an estate planning lawyer about your options.

Being Informed Before You Decide Anything

Before you can make an informed choice about whether you can balance your duties as the executor of a will with your other obligations, it is important to know more about what you will have to do and how much time it may take.

To learn more, we encourage you to read the related links provided on this page and to start a live chat with us today to have your individual questions answered.

 

James F. Roberts
Founder and owner of the Law Office of James F. Roberts and Associates, a premiere estate planning law firm