An Estate Executor’s Responsibilities in Ohio

Estate executor responsibilities - The Law Office of David B. FerrellIf you’ve been named the executor of a loved one’s estate, it’s important that you fulfill your duties within the scope of Ohio probate law. An experienced estate planning attorney can help guide you through this difficult time to ensure that your family member’s assets are distributed according to his or her wishes. Although the specifics can vary greatly depending on numerous factors (including the size of the estate and the nature and content of the estate plan), below are basic guidelines of what you should do if a loved one passes away and you’ve been named their estate executor.

  • File the necessary paperwork with the probate court. This can vary by county, so check with the appropriate Ohio probate court to find out what’s required in your jurisdiction. Although there is no specific legal requirement regarding how soon after someone’s death the paperwork must be filed, it should be done in a timely manner. You’ll need to obtain an executor/administrator bond, required by most probate courts.
  • Within three months of the opening of the estate, you’ll need to file (with the probate court) and inventory your loved one’s belongings and their value. Obtain any necessary appraisals.
  • Pay any outstanding bills, including utilities, credit cards, medical bills, income taxes, and any other debts.
  • Distribute your loved one’s property according to their wishes, as established in their estate plan documents.
  • Pay the appropriate estate tax.
  • Once the estate administration is complete, file a final account with the probate court (detailing all disbursements & receipts) and any other paperwork necessary to close the estate.

Acting as an estate administrator is an important responsibility and can often become more complicated than it initially seems. It can be difficult to handle all of the legal and logistical requirements while also dealing with the loss of a loved one. For this reason, and because there are deadlines with significant consequences if missed, it’s a good idea to consult an experienced Canton estate planning lawyer as soon as possible upon being named estate executor.

About David Ferrell

For over 30 years, David B. Ferrell has practiced excellence in the areas of probate, estate planning, DUI, and divorce law. David Ferrell is dedicated to providing each client with personal service, trustworthy advice, and expert representation. David B. Ferrell's Google+ Profile

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