A recent media piece refers to a person who might “comb through regular mail and email, and sift through tax returns, too.”

Conceivably, that individual might well have a criminal bent, being focused on something like identity theft or other wrongdoing.

Or he or she might be an estate executor.

You’ve likely heard of that tag. Perhaps you yourself have served in such a capacity or are now being called up to do so.

Executors – sometimes also called personal representatives in Arkansas and elsewhere – have many duties to attend to when they are tasked to act in an estate matter.

And they frequently have many questions, too. Being an executor is a “burden,” notes a recent article on the subject matter, and “a role no one really relishes.”

That doesn’t mean you can’t do it well and with due dispatch. Legions of people perform successfully as executors. Their ability to do so often resides in being focused and meticulous about the obligations confronting them.

A proven estate planning attorney can materially assist in the process of handling a decedent’s affairs after he or she has passed away and help ensure that all required details are duly attended to. Those centrally include things like the following:

  • Obtaining a death certificate and identifying all the parties that need to be notified that an estate holder has passed (e.g., the Social Security Administration, investment firms and life insurers)
  • Locating a will and helping the executor fully understand and carry out its terms
  • Identifying, valuing, protecting and ultimately disposing of assets to heirs in the manner specified by the estate holder
  • Ensuring that all payments owed to creditors (including tax authorities) are paid

Being an estate executor is both an honor (an acknowledgment of another’s trust) and an exaction. On-point input into the process from an established estate administration lawyer can go far toward making the experience a satisfying and successful one.