When you become an administrator of an estate, how do you know your duties? 60 Answers as of July 08, 2013

I have become the administrator of an estate. Will the judge or lawyer send me a document telling me my duties and what % I can receive?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
Evan Guthrie Law Firm
Evan Guthrie Law Firm | Evan Guthrie
The probate court will usually have an information packet to get started. A probate attorney can help with estate matters. The maximum amount a personal representative is entitled to in South Carolina is five percent.
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 8/13/2012
Halloran & Sage | Vincent A. Liberti
Good questions. I suggest asking the court directly, or checking the court's website for such information. The court clerks should be able to help you.

They probably will forward some instructions to you, which may even include a booklet of duties and generally asked questions.

As to the fee, that depends upon the state. Some have statutory limits, for others it is some "reasonable compensation" standard that the judge determines. I suggest asking the court clerks this questions too.

In general it depends upon the work performed and the general costs to have such work done. For example, accounting or legal work would entail higher fees than merely administrative or secretarial work. Best course of action is to keep track of all your time, what you did, and all costs (with receipts) for reimbursement.
Answer Applies to: Connecticut
Replied: 8/13/2012
Geoff Germane, Attorney at Law | Geoff Germane
No they will not. You should hire a lawyer to advise you, as there are serious consequences to not complying with your duties, and "ignorance of the law" is not a defense. Which puts people in a very difficult spot, because how to administer an estate is not taught in schools or always subject to common sense. The Utah Probate Code sets forth your duties, and is available online. You should hire an attorney to advise you to at least a limited degree.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 8/8/2012
Law Office of Robert J. Slotkin | Robert J. Slotkin
You're entitled to 3% of the gross value of the estate as compensation. The duties are as follows: What is Required of a Personal Representative? Being the personal representative, also known in some states as the executor, of an estate is not a task to take lightly. A personal representative is the person responsible for managing the administration of a deceased individual's estate. Although the time and effort involved will vary with the size of the estate, even if you are the personal representative of a small estate you will have important duties that must be performed correctly or you may be liable to the estate or the beneficiaries. The personal representative is either named in the will or if there is no will, appointed by the court. You do not have to accept the position of personal representative even if you are named in the will. The average estate administration takes one year, though you won't need to work full time on it. Following are some of the duties you may have to perform as personal representative: Locate documents. If there is a will, but you don't already know where the will is or the will hasn't already been brought to court, you may need to find it among the deceased's belongings. If all you have is a copy of the will, you may need to get the original from the lawyer who drafted it. You will also need to get a copy of the death certificate. Hire an attorney. You are not required to hire an attorney, but mistakes can cost you money. You may be personally liable if something goes wrong with the estate or the payment of taxes. An attorney can help you make sure all the proper steps are taken and deadlines met. Apply for probate. If there is a will, the court will grant you letters testamentary. If there is no will, you will receive letters of administration. This will officially begin your work as the executor. Notify interested parties. Notify the beneficiaries of the will, if there is a will, as well as any potential heirs (such as children, siblings, or parents who may or may not be named in a will). In addition, you will have to place an advertisement for potential creditors in a newspaper near where the deceased lived. Manage the deceased's property. You will need to prepare a list of the deceased's assets and liabilities, and you may need to collect any property in the hands of other people. One of the executor's jobs is to protect the property from loss, so you will need to assure the property is kept safe. You will also need to hire an appraiser to find out how much any property is worth. In addition, if the estate includes a business, you may have to make sure the business continues to run. Pay valid claims by creditors. Once the creditors are determined, you will need to pay the deceased's debts from the estate's funds. The executor is not personally liable for deceased's debts. The estate usually pays any reasonable funeral expenses first. Other debts include probate and administration fees and taxes as well as any valid claims filed by creditors. File tax returns. You need to make sure the tax forms are filed within the time frame set under the law. Taxes will include estate taxes and income taxes. Distribute the assets to the beneficiaries. Once the creditors' claims are clear, the executor is responsible for making sure the beneficiaries get what they are entitled to under the will or under the law, if there is no will. You may be required to sell property in order to fulfill legacies in a will. In addition, you may have to set up any trusts required by the will. Keep accurate records. It is very important to keep accurate records of everything you do. You will need to create a final accounting, which the beneficiaries must review before the distribution of the estate can be finalized. The accounting should include any distributions and expenses as well as any income earned by the estate since the deceased died. File the final accounting with the court. Once the final accounting is approved by the beneficiaries and the court, the court will close the estate. File a final report with the court and close the estate. All this can be a lot of work, but remember that the personal representative is entitled to compensation, subject to approval by the court. Keep in mind that the compensation is counted as income, so you will need to declare it on your income taxes.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 8/7/2012
Law Office of George M. Derieg
Law Office of George M. Derieg | George Derieg
If this is going through probate in California, and you have petitioned to become the administrator/personal representative, you should have already signed form DE147, which explains all of your duties.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/7/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    If you have a lawyer assisting you, then you should request this information from them. If not, you need to speak with the clerks in the Register of Wills office. They should be able to give you some basic guidance and there may be a pamphlet they can provide. If the estate is complicated, you may need a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/7/2012
    Austin Hirschhorn, P.C.
    Austin Hirschhorn, P.C. | Austin Hirschhorn
    The probate court has information available about your duties. You should contact one of the representatives at the court that appointed you and ask them for an instruction sheet. If they don't have one available they should be able to direct you how to get the information you need.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/7/2012
    Law Office of Matt Potempa, PLLC
    Law Office of Matt Potempa, PLLC | Matt Potempa
    Your lawyer should detail your duties as an administrator. Also, check with the county clerk that is administering the estate. They often have informational packets to assist you with your duties.
    Answer Applies to: Tennessee
    Replied: 8/3/2012
    Edward L. Armstrong, P.C. | Edward L. Armstrong
    The attorney for the estate should tell you what he expects you to do. In Missouri, the personal representative receives a commission based on the value of the property that is actually part of the probate estate. This would only include real property if it was sold. The probate estate normally (in Missouri) does not include any property that the decedent owned jointly with another person (except tenancy in common) and will not include property in trust or life insurance proceeds payable to a named beneficiary (other than the personal representative or the estate). The commission scale is as follows: 5% on the first $5,000 4% on the next $20,000 3% on the next $75,000 2.75% on the next $600,000 2% on everything over $1,000,000.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis
    Indianapolis Bankruptcy Law Office of Eric C. Lewis | Eric Lewis
    Your lawyer should explain everything to you. The court will not send you instructions.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Atlas and Hudon, LLP | Douglas Mackubin Thomas
    A great place to start your inquiry as to the duties of an estate executor is on the website for the Connecticut Judicial Branch. It has a page devoted to the Connecticut Probate Court System (go to http://www.jud.ct.gov/probate/faq.html) with answers to frequently asked questions such as yours, forms and information brochures. In particular, download the brochure entitled "Guidelines for Administration of Decedents' Estates". The clerks at the Probate Court are always willing to help point you in the right direction but, as they will tell you, they aren't authorized to offer legal advice. For that you would need to contact an attorney who specializes in probate matters.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Alvin Lundgren | Alvin Lundgren
    A personal representative has a responsibility to assemble all of the debts and assets of the deceased. The debts get paid from the assets. Any remaining amounts are distributed under the terms of the will, or the laws of intestacy, and by agreement of the heirs. You must document everything. You are entitled to hire lawyers or accountancies to help, You get a fee set by the court. You may call for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Darrell B. Reynolds, P.C. | Darrell B. Reynolds
    It appears you need an attorney to assist you in this matter. If you retain an attorney, the attorney fees, it may be possible to charge them to the estate depending on the circumstances.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C.
    O'Keefe Legal Services, L.L.C. | Sean P. O'Keefe
    A personal representative's (or "administrator's") duties may be found in Titles 6 and 7 of the Estates and Trusts Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland. Your lawyer may tell you those duties, but I wouldn't expect to hear about them from a judge. A personal representative is entitled to "reasonable compensation for services." Unless the will provides a larger measure for compensation, the personal rep.'s commission may not exceed 9% of the property subject to administration that does not exceed $20,000, or $1,800 plus 3.6% of the excess over $20,000 if the property subject to admin. exceeds $20,000. From the MD Register of Wills: "Maryland Law states that a personal representative is under general duty to settle and distribute the estate of the decedent in accordance with the terms of the will and the estates of decedents law as expeditiously and with little sacrifice of value as is reasonable under the circumstances.' More specifically, in a regular estate the personal representative has a duty to: take possession of and marshal assets; prepare and file an inventory and information report; prepare and file an accounting; pay debts, taxes and costs of administration; and fulfill all other responsibilities required by Maryland Law."
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Law Office of Charles M. Vacca Jr. | Charles Martin Vacca Jr.
    That may be found under the RI general Laws/statutes. Your attorney should also explain these matters to you.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Rags Beals Seigler Patterson & Gray
    Rags Beals Seigler Patterson & Gray | Ronald D. Reemsnyder
    Probate Ct clerks are usually helpful and can tell you what to do.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 6/28/2013
    Bullivant Houser Bailey PC
    Bullivant Houser Bailey PC | Darin Christensen
    If you are the personal representative, the lawyer helping you with the probate should explain your duties. Basically, they are to gather the estate assets, pay all legitimate debts, account for all expenditures, and after approval by the court pay/distribute the assets to the heirs. You should not make any distributions to yourself (or any other beneficiary) until approved by the court at the end of the probate.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/1/2012
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    If you are involved in a formal probate, you should have an attorney representing you. That attorney can advise you. If you are involved in an informal probate, you should receive documents from the Court Administrator's office telling you how to proceed.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Danville Law Group | Scott Jordan
    There is a form entitled Duties of Administrator which you are required to sign and file with the court. It is available on the California Courts forms website under Probate.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Whiteford, Taylor, & Preston | Edwin Fee
    You may obtain information about the duties of a personal representative by contacting an attorney or the Register of Wills. A personal representative is entitled to reasonable compensation, not to exceed 9% of the first $20,000 of the estate plus 3.6% of the estate above $20,000.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Christopher R. Smitherman, LLC | Christopher R. Smitherman
    Your lawyer (the Estates attorney) should be able to advise you of the your obligations. It can vary based on the content of the will. Additional requirements may exist if you are an Administrator of an Estate where there was no will.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Durkin & Graham, P.C.
    Durkin & Graham, P.C. | Joan Durkin
    The court will only give you instructions on whether or not you need to file an inventory. As executor/administrator you should hire an attorney to advise you on how to proceed. The will may say whether you are to be paid or not. Often times even when the will says the executor can be paid, if the executor is also an heir and it is family, they often waive the fee. If there is no will then you are likely eligible for a statutory fee of up to 5% of the value of the estate (ie. the proceeds that you collect from selling assets).
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Candace K Ladley, Attorney | Candace Kay Ladley
    Normally your attorney will provide you with instructions on your duties and liabilities as an executor or administrator. If you still have concerns you should contact your attorney directly and discuss them with him or her. In California, the executor or administrator receives the same fees as the attorney, which is a percentage of the gross estate on a sliding scale. If you perform extraordinary duties, such as running or selling a business or residence, you can have your attorney petition the court for extraordinary fees which are usually based on your knowledge, education and experience. Discuss this with your attorney In Washington state, the executor or administrator is entitled to reasonable fees which are based on your knowledge, education and experience and difficulty in handling the estate. Discuss this with your attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski
    Law Offices of Gerald A. Bagazinski | Gerald A. Bagazinski
    Even if you want to do this yourself, you should seek the advice of an attorney. It is very important to understand your duties because if you fail the court can surcharge you for any deficiency. SCAO form 573 must be sent to the beneficiaries. This form sets forth notice of your appointment and your duties.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Pamela R. Lawson | Pamela R. Lawson, Esq.
    The judge will not sent you instructions; if you are represented by lawyer in the probate, he or she will give you instructions and when the probate is ready to close, you will be entitled to fees. The fees are statutory and are a percentage of a graduated scale, the amount depends upon the dollar amount in the probate estate.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Chmielik Law Firm, LLC
    Chmielik Law Firm, LLC | Martin Chmielik
    As far as what percentage of the estate you can expect to receive, that will depend on whether there is a will or not. If there is a will, then you will receive whatever is provided for you in the Will. If there is no will, then your inheritance will be determined by the default Missouri laws, which can be found in the Missouri statutes at section 474.010. Essentially this law provides that the spouse gets everything if there are no kids; if there are kids and a surviving spouse, then the spouse and kids share (though the spouse is entitled to claim some extra property, such as the marital house/car/household items, etc.); if there is no surviving spouse, then the kids split everything equally; if there are no surviving kids and no surviving spouse, then the parents and brothers and sisters split everything equally; and so on. For your other question, your duties as Personal Representative of an Estate in Missouri are numerous. Your attorney should be able to provide you with a list of duties, and if you contact your local probate court, they may have a list of duties they can provide you as well. When a new estate is opened and one of my clients is appointed as the personal representative, I usually send them a letter with the following checklist of things they need to make sure they look into: 1. Obtain the original will, with all codicils and written statements or lists disposing of tangible personal property in accordance with ? 474.333, RSMo., and provide the original will, codicils and written statement or lists to me; 2. Obtain all of the decedent?s deeds, titles for vehicles, bank and financial institution statements, and other evidence of title to assets owned by the decedent, and provide the information to me; 3. Forward mail delivery from the deceased person?s address to your address; 4. Identify the estate assets and their location; 5. Safeguard the assets, including the residence, and consider arrangements to continue utility services; 6. Inventory the decedent?s safe deposit box (it is advisable to have a disinterested witness with you at the time); 7. Confirm that the real estate and tangible personal property are adequately insured and that successors in interest are protected; 8. Collect and cancel any credit cards, charge accounts, magazine subscriptions, etc., stop automatic withdrawals if appropriate, and request final statements and refunds; 9. Prepare insurance claim forms for life, health, and accident insurance and collect the proceeds, making copies of policies for estate tax use before mailing. 10. Caution all beneficiaries against payment of the debts of the deceased from their own funds; 11. Terminate any leases and utility services, if appropriate, in connection with rentals, and/or instruct tenants to direct payment to you. 12. Notify any attorney-in-fact who was given a power of attorney of decedent?s death; 13. Obtain valuation letters from the banks or other financial institutions where estate assets are held, and facilitate any appraisal of estate assets that may be needed; 14. Obtain tax advice from a certified public accountant and apply for employee identification number for estate?Treasury Department Form SS4; 15. Open an estate bank account in the name of the personal representative (clearly identifying yourself as personal representative) and transfer bank accounts of the decedent to estate accounts, and deposit all estate funds in estate account and pay all obligations by check from that account (*Keep all personal funds separate from the estate account and estate assets*); 16. Determine if you have any claim for reimbursement or any other claim against the estate, which may or may not require appointment of administrator *ad litem*; 17. Ascertain any employee benefits; 18. Notify the Social Security Administration (SSA) of the death and return SSA check for month of death, and contact the local Social Security office concerning survivorship benefits; 19. Contact the Veterans Administration regarding any survivorship benefits, life insurance, and burial allowance if not applied for during funeral arrangements; 20. Decide if you want to take a personal representative?s fee or waive the fee; 21. Decide if you want to disclaim any assets to which you would otherwise be entitled; 22. File estate inventory and appraisement within thirty days after your appointment as personal representative; 23. Consider filing for any applicable statutory allowances; 24. Determine what assets of the estate need to be sold and arrange that with me; 25. Maintain clear and comprehensive records of all transactions and dealings.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Office Of Victor Waid
    Law Office Of Victor Waid | Victor Waid
    In answer to your question as to your duties when you become an administrator, I am assuming you were appointed by a court order, issued letters of administration; at that time you should have had to sign the letters of administration, filed back with the court and were issued a set of instructions duties of an administrator. As to your compensation, the percentage of the value of the estate you are entitled to, which is generally the same the lawyer receives, and both are set forth in the California Probate code.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith | Eric Smith
    That depends on the court. In larger counties (Dallas, Tarrant, Harris), where there are statutory probate courts, the courts have more staff and resources and the court administrator or other staff may provide instruction. It is ultimately your responsibility to know your duties and your attorney should be your first resource on that. Your first responsibility is going to be to file an Inventory and Appraisement of the estate, which is due 90 days from when you receive letters of administration.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC
    THE BROOME LAW FIRM, LLC | Barry D. Broome
    You should have received a Handbook with the procedures and responsibilities. That is how you know what to do unless you have a lawyer to walk you through the process. I would get a lawyer unless you have accounting and business expertise. Barry Your financial plan is not complete until it is co-ordinated with your estate plan. Will your family be provided for when you are gone? Without a Will, the court will decide.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Lisa L. Hogreve, LC | Lisa L. Hogreve
    When you petition for, and are appointed the Personal Representative (administrator) of an estate in Florida, you must be represented by an attorney. The attorney represents you, as Personal Representative. Your attorney should be able to answer all your questions regarding your duties and the basis for determining the fee you are entitled to receive for acting as the Personal Representative. Currently, the Personal Representative is entitled to 3% of the inventory value of the estate as a fee.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Leonard A. Kaanta, P.C. | Leonard A. Kaanta
    You must follow the will and requirements of the probate code, the court can not give you advice, you may want to consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Office of William L Spern | William Spern
    Speak with your lawyer. In MI, a notice is sent out outlining what is to be done. You do not get a %. Rather, you are paid a reasonable rate per hour for work performed. Any request for a payment of fees must be filed for hearing, notice given to all interested parties and approved by the court.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C.
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C. | Dean T Jennings
    You should immediately sit down with the attorney for the estate and have them tell you exactly what you should do and are required to do.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 7/8/2013
    Olson Law Firm | Edward M Olson
    Your duties are set forth in the Michigan Estates and Protected Individuals Code (EPIC). You should hire an attorney to provide advice and guidance as you go forward.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    James T. Dunn PC | James T. Dunn
    The Judge will not, but the lawyer should. Your duties are described in the Utah Code.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Dara Goldsmith
    All of those issues are addressed in the statutes. You are charged with knowing the law. I suggest you make inquiry of your attorney, or if you do not have one, you may wish to hire one.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    The Law Offices of Laurie E. Ohall, P.A.
    The Law Offices of Laurie E. Ohall, P.A. | Laurie E. Ohall
    In Florida, the statutes dictate the personal representative's responsibilities. In my practice, I send a letter to the P.R. once they are appointed letting them know exactly what their responsibilities are and discussing how the probate will work and how I will help them. If your attorney has not yet done that, you may want to call and ask if they will be providing you with instructions, or make an appointment to meet with the attorney to go over what is expected.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C.
    Minor, Bandonis and Haggerty, P.C. | Brian Haggerty
    In Lincoln County, the judge sends a very brief letter generally outlining the duties of the administrator. It barely scratches the surface. Do yourself, and the other heirs, a favor, and hire a lawyer to help you with the probate. There are five chapters of Oregon law dealing exclusively with probate, and many more statutes that affect or are affected by probate issues. After 12 years of doing probates, I still don't know it all. Doing the probate right, it is a clean and open process that ensures that the decedent's debts get paid and his or her will is carried out; doing it wrong, it can be a hopeless expensive mess. Do it right the first time.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    McIntyre Tate LLP | David J. Strachman
    The duties are set forth in Rhode Island statute and case law. You have been invested with great authority by the court and need to have counsel guiding you.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 7/8/2013
    Law Offices of Michael N. Stafford | Michael N. Stafford
    Under California law your attorney will advise you of your duties as the administrator of the estate and will furnish you with a document entitled Duties and Liabilities of Personal Representative which list your duties.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Frederick & Frederick PLC | James P Frederick
    If you have a lawyer then he/she should let you know what needs to be done and how much you are allowed to charge. Whether it makes sense to charge depends on the circumstances. While you are entitled to reasonable compensation, anything that you receive for services is taxable income. Anything you receive as an inheritance is likely tax free.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Frances Headley | Frances Headley
    Your duties and compensation are controlled by the Probate Code and the rules of court. While there are self help books that you can refer to, you should at least consult a probate attorney to help you get the basic rules.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Charles R. Perry
    Law Offices of Charles R. Perry | Charles R. Perry
    The court will not send you anything that explains your duties as the administrator of the estate, or what you can expect in terms of compensation. In general, however, your duties are to identify and manage the estate assets, identify and pay the estate liabilities, handle any litigation or disputes in which the estate may be involved, distribute the estate according to the will (or according to the laws of intestacy if there is no will), and report to the court as needed regarding your activities as administrator. You also may not mix the estate assets with your own.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Office of James C. Siebert & Associates
    Law Office of James C. Siebert & Associates | James C. Siebert
    Generally, the Judge will not advise you of your duties and responsibilities, this is the job of your Attorney. While some Attorneys have letters which they send out explaining duties and responsibilities, others simply advise the administrator verbally. Frequently it will depend upon the complexity of the Estate. You need to discuss this with the Attorney for the Estate. In regard to the %, I am assuming you are asking about fees you may be entitled to in acting as Administrator of the Estate. Again, you need to speak to the Attorney for the Estate for specifics, including what you must do to document any claim for fees. In Illinois an Administrator will not receive a percentage of the Estate, but can be compensated on an hourly basis for efforts on behalf of the Estate.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Howes & Anderson, P.C.
    Howes & Anderson, P.C. | Ronald Anderson
    Your duties are set by the Code of Iowa and your attorney should be able to discuss these with you. If you have any questions you should contact your attorney before acting because some actions may require Court approval. The Court will ultimately set your fee. However your attorney should be able to give you an idea about the likely amount that you can expect to receive.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Salladay Law Office | Lance Salladay
    You attorney should give you some instruction on your duties as he Personal Representative of the estate. If he/she does not then you should ask for information. you can also get information as to your duties on the internet. Any compensation for a Personal Representative is NOT based on a percentage of the estate. What is allowed is a "reasonable sum", and that should be discussed with your attorney to avoid potential problems.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    You can hire an attorney and other professionals to assist you in settling the estate and to answer all your questions. Your local bar association may have information on your duties and responsibilities. Or you can read your state's statutes on estate procedures.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Heltenberg Law
    Heltenberg Law | Jodi R. Heltenberg
    The Colorado Bar Association provides a helpful brochure entitled "So Now You Are a Personal Representative" that outlines your duties. You can download a copy at http://www.cobar.org/index.cfm/ID/20882/.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Richard J Kaplan, PA
    Richard J Kaplan, PA | Richard J Kaplan
    Your lawyer should instruct you on your duties and normally the Personal Representative Fee is set at 3% of the value of the probated estate.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Horn & Johnsen SC
    Horn & Johnsen SC | Dera L. Johnsen-Tracy
    Assuming you have been named as the personal representative in an informal administration, the Wisconsin Register in Probate Association has compiled a very useful manual called A Personal Representative's Guide to Informal Estate Administration in Wisconsin. This guide can be found at http://www.wicourts.gov/services/public/selfhelp/docs/probateguide.pdf. In summary, the personal representative's main duties are to: 1) Identify and collect the decedent's assets. 2) Manage those assets during the probate process. 3) Determine the surviving spouse's rights under the state marital property law. 4) Pay debts, claims, taxes, and probate administrative expenses. 5) Make any distributions to the surviving spouse or dependent children required under state law. 6) Distribute the remaining assets to those named in the will (or if there is no will, to the heirs at law). Generally, the personal representative has a right to receive compensation equal 2 percent of the inventory value of the estate assets (less any mortgages or liens). The personal representative may wish to hire an attorney of his or her choice for professional legal advice related to the probate process.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Barlow Flake LLP
    Barlow Flake LLP | Jonathan W. Barlow
    If you, as the Administrator, are represented by an attorney then your attorney should properly advise you about your duties. If you feel like your attorney has not properly advised you, you should feel free to contact your attorney and express that you are feeling unsure about your duties and responsibilities as Administrator. If you are still not satisfied after speaking with your attorney, you might be well-served to consult with another attorney. Unfortunately, some attorneys advertise that they practice probate law, when the reality is that they do so very infrequently and are not as familiar with probate law as they should be. You should ensure that your probate attorney is experienced in probate law and that probate is a main practice area, not just an occasional practice area. If you are not represented by an attorney, you are responsible to understand your duties and responsibilities on your own. In Clark County, Nevada, the Court will not provide you with any documents or forms describing your duties. Title 12 of the Nevada Revised Statutes (Chapters 132-156) governs probate law and procedure in Nevada. You should review and become familiar with the requirements of these Chapters, though this may be a daunting task for a non-attorney. Accepting the position of Administrator requires you to perform your duties properly, whether you are represented by an attorney or not. If you fail to perform your duties properly, you could subject yourself to personal liability for any harm caused to the estate. Though it is possible to perform your role as Administrator without an attorney, you would be well-served to retain an experienced probate attorney who will help you understand your duties and responsibilities and will ensure that the probate administration is performed properly and quickly.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Pia Anderson Dorius Reynard & Moss | Jason Hunter
    Unfortunately, the judge will not send you a listing of your duties. A lawyer can provide you with some guidance on this, but will not likely do so unless you request it. Alternatively, you can review the Utah Code to determine your duties, which you will find listed in Utah Code title 75, Chapters 2 and 3. There may be a general listing of your duties floating around on the Internet, but I suggest you discuss your duties with counsel to determine a reasonable fee for your services and the proper distribution of the estate you are administered.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Law Offices of Robert H. Glorch | Jeffrey R. Gottlieb
    Talk to your attorney. This should be an ongoing conversation. If you are not clear on your responsibilities, which can vary from case to case, then you should ask your attorney for more information. The Judge will not send you anything about your duties. Discuss with your attorney how your compensation should be computed. Generally speaking, I advise my administrator clients to keep a log of their time and what they did for the estate.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 7/31/2012
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    Your attorney should define your obligations as the Administrator, e.g., there will be documents for you to sign and activities to perform. You asked about the % to be received by you. You may charge a reasonable charge for your services as Administrator. Any "amount" to be received as a benificary is defined in the Will. If there is no Will, which appears to be the case here, Washington statute defines the distribution of the estate assets to a surviving spouse, children, etc.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/30/2012
    Shutt Law Firm, PLLC
    Shutt Law Firm, PLLC | Isaac Shutt
    Your attorney should be able to answer all your questions as to your duties. If not, many probate courts have guides on their websites to assist. Go to your local county's probate court's website to see if they have a guide available for download.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/30/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Commonly related administrators serve without remuneration, and are selected out of the heir or beneficiary group. The duties should be explained to you by an attorney, who generally you would be allowed to hire as the fiduciary and pay out if the Estate/Trust. Additionally fees, both for a paid administrator and the professions hired are subject to the approval of the Court. They are generally based on time, services and expensed incurred, not a percentage.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/30/2012
    Law offices of Ron Webster | Ronald S. Webster
    In Florida, a personal representative shall be entitled to a commission payable from the estate assets without court order as compensation for ordinary services. The commission shall be based on the compensable value of the estate, which is the inventory value of the probate estate assets and the income earned by the estate during administration. The guidelines for reasonable compensation are set forth in Florida Statute 733.617. The lawyer for the personal representative should inform you of your duties. It is his job and not the Judge.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/30/2012
    Timiney Law Firm
    Timiney Law Firm | Leigh Anne Timiney
    An estate administrators duties vary from estate to estate depending upon the estate and the assets of that estate. Yes, you will likely get direction or orders from either the judge handling the probate or the estate attorney about what you are needed to do and what your duties are. With respect to compensation, it depends upon your state laws and what the individual has provided for the administrator in their will. Many administrators or executors are not compensated. It just depends upon the estate plan.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 7/30/2012
    The Schreiber Law Firm
    The Schreiber Law Firm | Jeffrey D. Schreiber
    If you are in California there is a statutory calculation of what fees are paid to the administrator. If you are in California there is a form you would have already had to sign as to what your duties are to be appointed. You should discuss this with the attorney representing the estate.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/30/2012
Click to View More Answers:
12 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Free Legal QuestionsConnect with a local attorney