Before an executor can serve in their future duties as personal representative for a deceased person’s estate, they must begin by inventorying all assets. Identifying all assets that belong to the decedents and safekeeping them if necessary are two important components of serving as a personal representative.
Safekeeping is especially important if the decedent left behind any assets that could be targeted by thieves. Part of this process, especially if you are not familiar with the belongings of the decedent, could be an actual hunt for assets, such as spending time tracking down insurance policies, safe deposit boxes or financial accounts. Usually an interview with family members and a search through all documents belonging to the deceased is necessary.
Some of these assets could be mentioned in the decedent’s will but the executor cannot stop there and it is dangerous to assume that the only assets belonging to the decedent are those named outright in the will. Once the executor has gathered this material, they then must maintain the assets that require any upkeep. For example, insurance policies maintained by the decedent should not lapse at this point in time.
There is one key way to pay for these ongoing benefits during this temporary period which is to use the estate’s money. No survivors are responsible for paying out of pocket costs for a deceased’s estate.
The more estate planning work you do in advance for your loved ones, the easier it will be for the personal representative to close out your Virginia estate. You can discuss your planning with them or leave detailed instructions and documents for that executor
For more information about naming a personal representative for your estate in Virginia, set aside time to speak with an experienced estate planning lawyer today.