Duties and Responsibilities Of An Executor Of a Will

Updated on: Oct 12th, 2021


4 min read

An executor is a person/institution who is the legal representative, named in a will or implied as such, to carry out the process of the distribution of the assets of the testator.

Criteria to Appoint an Executor

  • The executor appointed should be of 18 years of age and also of sound mind.
  • Substitute executors shall be appointed in case the original executor denies to fulfil his duties when actual action is warranted.
  • The executor appointed may be either a beneficiary to the will or a third person(in case a dispute seems likely).
  • It shall be made known to the executor that he/she shall be liable for any errors or mistakes even if the same has been executed in good faith.

Duties and Responsibilities of an Executor

  • Meeting of funeral expenses from the estate left by the testator.
  • Obtaining the death certificate of the testator.
  • Interpretation of the will in the right manner and distribution of assets to the correct beneficiary.
  • Drawing up an inventory of the assets to be sold or disposed of.
  • Expense management for all the properties until the disposal of the same.
  • Applying for probate since it is the official evidence of the executor’s authority, where probate is mandated by law.
  • The settlement of assets as directed in the will.
  • Payment of money that is due from the testator or collecting money due to the testator.
  • Maintaining records of all transactions.
  • Representing the testator in any legal action(excluding criminal and defamatory matters).

Advantages of an Executor

  • Beneficiaries shall be ensured of proper handling of the property.
  • By appointing a third person as an executor, the family can be relieved of the administrative responsibilities of executing the will.
  • If the executor is appointed in time, it shall save time and money and shall prove to be advantageous to the beneficiaries.
  • Many cases have been pending in courts due to family disputes which can be avoided by appointing an executor who will be neutral and fair in his dealings.

Disclaimer: The materials provided herein are solely for information purposes. No attorney-client relationship is created when you access or use the site or the materials. The information presented on this site does not constitute legal or professional advice and should not be relied upon for such purposes or used as a substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your state.

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Quick Summary

An executor is a legal representative named in a will to distribute assets; must meet criteria, fulfill duties like funeral expenses, probate, asset settlement; advantages include proper handling and avoiding family disputes. Disclaimer: Information provided is for reference only, not legal advice.

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