“Estate administration” refers to the steps that must be taken to guide an estate through the probate process. Collecting a decedent’s estate, paying off any outstanding debts, and distributing the remainder of the estate to the decedent’s heirs or beneficiaries are all part of this judicial process. The specific responsibilities will be laid forth in the decedent’s will or Texas probate law (if there is no will).
The Houston lawyers at Daniel Albert Law have over 15 years of experience representing people in estate administration throughout Texas. We can provide you with the assistance and support you need. To speak with one of our qualified and experienced attorneys, please get in touch with us today.
What Does It Mean to Be an Estate Administrator?
An estate administrator is responsible for various tasks related to the administration of an estate in probate court. Depending on the size of the estate and whether or not there was a will, the estate administrator’s exact responsibilities will change. However, typical estate administrator responsibilities include:
- Compile the decedent’s belongings, assets, and financial accounts.
- Make a list of any unpaid bills or debts.
- Catalog all assets and debts with the probate court.
- Notify the creditors and debtors.
- Request for life insurance policies to be paid to the estate.
- Pay off any outstanding debts and collect any money owed.
- File the estate’s state and federal tax returns, as well as any gift tax returns that are required.
- Discuss the estate with the heirs and beneficiaries.
- Distribute the estate as stated in the will or under state law.
While an administrator is usually named in a will, if the decedent did not leave a will, the court will nominate an administrator. This is typically the responsibility of a surviving spouse or children or the closest living blood relative (commonly known as the next of kin.)
The estate administrator will almost always be paid for their services, as managing an estate through probate can be a physically demanding, stressful, and time-consuming undertaking. Often, the decedent will choose to leave money or other assets to the estate administrator in their will. However, if there is no will, the state will choose how the administrator will be compensated — generally a percentage of the estate.
Call Our Houston Lawyers Today!
Although working with an attorney is not obligatory to administer an estate, it is strongly recommended. This is because most people have no experience with estate planning, and the probate process can be complicated. An attorney will be able to provide support and guidance as you navigate the complex judicial process.
With over 15 years of legal experience, the Houston Lawyers at Daniel Albert Law can provide assistance and support in estate administration matters. The death of a loved one can be traumatic, and navigating the complexities of the probate process is probably the last thing on your mind. We understand this — so our goal is to get you through this process as quickly and smoothly as possible so you can move on with your life. If you would like to learn more about your current situation and how our team can help, give us a call at 832-930-3059 or schedule an online consultation to speak with one of our representatives today.