What is Probate?
Probate is a court process to oversee the distribution of assets once a person passes away. Any asset that is left in only one person’s name must go through probate. This can be costly and time consuming.
Probate and estate settlement go hand-in-hand. While most people are interested in learning about probate-avoidance strategies, occasionally probate can be the best option. But when it is necessary, the probate process can often be costly and time consuming. We know and understand probate law. Our team of professionals can work closely with you to explain your options and help you determine your best course of action.
Why Choose a Corporate Executor?
Selecting an executor for your estate is a very personal and important decision. Many people choose a family member or close friend to perform this duty, but for the novice or grieving family member, it can be overwhelming. Having a corporate executor allows you to pass off the many required tasks, yet still be very active in the process.
We routinely serve as a corporate executor. Our experienced professionals are dedicated to completing the settlement process quickly and efficiently. All executor fees are set by state law, so you can feel confident in knowing you will never pay more for our expertise than what a family member or friend would be permitted to charge for the same service.
Things to Consider When Choosing an Executor:
Availability: An executor must be available when needed, regardless of other family or business matters.
Impartiality: An executor must be free from personal bias. All family members need to feel that no one is favored and that all have equal access to information.
Knowledge: Estate administration can be complicated. State laws govern the process and unfamiliar tax laws can come into play. A variety of filings need to be made on time. If errors are made, penalties and fines may occur. Executors should have the knowledge to get it done the right way, the first time.
Experience: Every estate presents a unique mix of assets: personal property, stocks and bonds, life insurance, investment real estate, and/or family business interest. The executor must know how to handle all types of assets and holdings.
Investment Capabilities: An executor must have an understanding of current financial markets and be capable of making informed investment decisions.
Patience & Sensitivity: Estate settlement is a time of grief and adjustment. The executor needs to be responsive to concerns of the beneficiaries.
Longevity: No one knows when the executor’s services will be needed. A corporate executor needs to be ready to serve at any time and complete the job of estate settlement, no matter how long it takes.
We understand the tax laws and work closely with local attorneys and accountants during the settlement process. Some of the duties we perform as an executor are:
- Collect, preserve, and manage the assets
- Pay all bills
- File all necessary tax returns
- File all necessary court papers
- Distribute the assets according to the will