Executors are the individuals or entities (Banks or Trust Companies) we name to administer the Estate. An Executor's duties, generally, are to:
- Identify and collect the assets of the Estate.
- Pay the debts and taxes of the decedent and the Estate.
- Distribute the remaining assets according the terms of the Will.
Service as an Executor is a serious responsibility. The Executor must administer the Estate under the dictates of the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and must comply with the terms of the Will. An Executor may be subject to personal liability in the event of a failure to carry out the duties of that office.
You will sometimes hear the term "Administrator" for someone handling an Estate. This is the formal name used in the event that a person dies without a Will. In that case, the Register of Wills issues "Letters of Administration" to the next of kin of the decedent. If you are named an Executor or are the person in line to serve as Administrator of a relative's Estate, it is important to seek the advice of experienced legal counsel. Our firm has represented many Executors and Administrators in carrying out their responsibilities.