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Executor duties through estate administration and probate

The old saying that no good deed goes unpunished may also be true for administrating someone's estate. While it may not be exactly punishment, a person who is chosen to be the executor of a loved one's estate may certainly feel burdened by the responsibility. Estate administration and probate can be challenging and frustrating, and those in Michigan who are chosen for the job should be aware of some of the requirements.

The first sacrifice an estate executor must make is time. Dealing with estate issues, like paying the bills and taxes of the deceased, gathering and valuating assets, and maintaining the property through the probate process, can certainly consume an executor's time. Even if someone is selected to be a co-executor, the two will likely want to spend time together making decisions. Any disagreements with the partner will certainly take even more time to resolve.

Disagreements with the heirs is also something for which an executor should be prepared. Since an executor is responsible for protecting the assets until the conclusion of probate, he or she may have to deal with potential heirs who are eager to claim what they expect to inherit. Additionally, if the executor is left to make decisions about how the property will be distributed, feathers may be ruffled, and arguments are possible.

One way an estate executor in Michigan can avoid many of these troubles is to enlist the assistance of an attorney. A lawyer who has experience in estate administration and probate can deal with many of the time-consuming issues of estate administration, such as contacting creditors and filing tax returns. Having an attorney means having legal support through any disputes with heirs.

Source: investopedia.com, "5 Surprising Hazards of Being an Executor", Barbara E. Weltman, Accessed on May 12, 2017

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