There is a lot of business to attend to when a loved one dies, not the least of which is understanding estate administration. During the emotional upheaval that comes with this loss, being the executor is an added task that can be both an honor and a burden. However, we’ve got some simple guidance to help you navigate the process.
What is Estate Administration?
When a person dies, someone must handle their affairs, including managing assets, property, and belongings. All these things are part of their estate, and managing their distribution is estate administration. Therefore, to be the executor of someone else’s estate is to be their estate administrator.
How to Settle Someone’s Estate
If the individual dies with a will, the executor follows those instructions and wishes in handling the property. The estate management follows South Carolina law if there is no will. Things an executor is responsible for include:
- Paying or settling any outstanding debt
- Paying estate taxes
- Filing paperwork
- Locating and protecting all estate assets
- Identifying beneficiaries and heirs of the deceased, including those named in the will
- Distributing financial assets, property, and belongings to those beneficiaries and heirs
Why Legal Assistance is Essential
When a person dies with property and assets, whether they have a will or not, a battle over those things is sometimes inevitable. Understanding the ins and outs of estate administration is critical to handling your loved one’s affairs with compassion and care, but it’s also the key to avoiding a fight over what they left behind. Having a legal team on your side will help you understand and get through the process. Additionally, they will represent you in the courts, guide you through the legal system, and help you avoid additional legal battles while ensuring the upholding of your loved one’s wishes and honoring their memory.
The trusted legal team at McCutchen McLean LLC has extensive experience in estate administration. Contact them today for a free consultation and the thoughtful guidance you need during this challenging time.