When you are the executor or administrator during the probate process, one of the most important factors to keep in mind is that you must keep accurate records. You will need to keep accurate records of each thing you do as an executor of the estate.
Keep an Accurate Inventory
Once an individual has passed away, their assets cannot be disposed of until they have been inventoried and you have gone through the probate process. You will want to obtain an accurate assessment of the estate as soon as possible, including property, investments, and real estate. Only then will you be able to avoid some of the most bitter and intense arguments that occur between family members.
Engage in Good Record-Keeping
Your records are essential when it is time to pay the final round of taxes for the deceased. You must keep track of any distributions you make to the heirs. You must keep records so you can submit your final accounting.
You do not want to wait until the last minute to keep records because you will then be scrambling to find information at the last minute, and you'll be more likely to make mistakes. You might not use the right schedule, or you might not correctly describe the receipts and disbursements. If you are concerned about whether or not you are keeping accurate records, you should consider consulting with probate law services.
A special court will look at all of your records before they close the probate. With a lack of proper records, this court can cause probate to be held up for months or even years. For this reason, it might be more efficient to hire a probate lawyer who can help guide you through the process as an executor and can help you avoid other mistakes such as incorrect valuations of the property in the estate.
Probate Law Doesn't Have to be Difficult
If the estate is very small, every state has procedures that allow for your estate to be handled with minimal or no court interference. There is often a predetermined cutoff for how large your estate can be, and if you do not reach that cut off, you will be allowed to execute the estate mostly on your own.
However, you must follow the right procedures for this to happen. A probate lawyer can help you with this process and then you will be able to make more decisions as an executor with autonomy. Contact a local probate lawyer to learn more.