Choosing an Executor for Your Will and Estate in Pennsylvania (Part A)

When you draft your will and estate plan, you will be responsible for choosing an executor who will act as the personal representative and administrator of your estate after your passing.

The executor has full power of title to all the decedent’s property in order to facilitate the necessary transactions; at the time that the administration of such assets and responsibilities is complete, those powers are terminated.

Some of the administrative tasks associated with being an executor include:

  • collecting mail;
  • canceling credit cards and subscription services;
  • notifying insurance or benefit plan administrators of the death; and 
  • taking a detailed inventory of estate assets, including but not limited to real estate, securities, lock boxes, and safes.

An executor has a fiduciary duty to the estate and to the beneficiaries of the estate, which means that he or she is legally bound to be both honest and diligent in any efforts related to managing the estate.

There are certain limitations when it comes to who you may choose to be your administrator – for instance, you may not select a minor or someone who has been convicted of a felony.

Some states have additional requirements for executors from other states, so speak with a Pennsylvania probate lawyer if there is a chance that your executor might be living out of state at such time that he or she is called to act.

Choosing an Executor: Your Attorney

Although you do not need to chose an attorney as your executor, nor do you need the assistance of an attorney in order to make a decision on who your executor ought to be, enlisting the aid of a probate lawyer can help answer tough questions and ensure that certain requirements, such as the final taxes on your property, are paid on time and without interference. Call a lawyer – 1-610-933-8069.

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David M. Frees, III
Attorney, Speaker and Author