A lot goes into administering an estate. First, it must be determined who will become the rightful owner of the deceased’s assets. This is accomplished through the probate process. If the decedent (the person who died) had a will, the will must be filed with the probate court within a certain amount of time, as determined by the state.
After the will is filed, the estate administration process typically includes the following steps:
- Determining what assets the decedent owned that may be subject to estate administration
- Opening the estate and appointing an administrator, or executor if there is a will
- Notifying any heirs who may be entitled to the decedent’s property (if there is no will) and distributes (those who are designated beneficiaries in the will) about the opening of the estate
- Notifying any potential creditors of their right to make a claim
- Filing an inventory of the assets known to be owned by the decedent
- Gathering and administering estate assets
- Creating and filing estate accounting
- Distributing assets according to the court’s final order (or trust documents) and closing the estate
At Creative Planning, we support clients through all stages of the estate administration process. Schedule a complimentary, no-obligation consultation and learn more about how Creative Planning can help you achieve your legacy goals.