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4 tips to help you perform your job as a personal representative

On Behalf of | Dec 8, 2021 | Estate Planning

Perhaps the need to fulfill your role as a personal representative came up sooner than you expected.

You may feel overwhelmed by the tasks involved with the final administration of an estate. Here are four tips that should help you succeed in your duties.

1. Follow the instructions of the court

Your responsibility as a personal representative is to carry out the instructions provided in the decedent’s will. Begin by understanding the rules and regulations. Your responsibilities come with legal liability, so you must follow the instructions of the court. First,  you must file the will with the probate court, then move on to notifying creditors, paying the debts of the decedent, protecting the assets of the estate, and finally, distributing the remaining assets to beneficiaries.

2. Maintain contact with beneficiaries

It is important to maintain regular contact with the beneficiaries. They may not understand everything involved in administering the estate. Therefore, it is a good idea to keep in touch. Be sure to inform them of your progress at major milestones.

3. Take your time

The administration of an estate takes time; usually, several months and sometimes more than a year, depending on the size and complexity of the estate. Do not rush the process. Make lists to help you stay organized, checking off tasks as you complete them.

4. Ask for professional help

Many questions will arise during your time as a personal representative. Beneficiaries may have questions that are not easy to answer. You will likely have your own questions about laws and various filings. Do not hesitate to turn to an attorney for help. You do not have to feel overwhelmed by the responsibilities; with legal guidance, you can complete your work as a personal representative successfully.