It’s hard to figure out what to do immediately after a person passes away in Oregon. There are a lot of moving parts that need to be taken care of and frankly, it can become overwhelming.
Estate plans will often name an executor of estate. This person is usually a close friend or family member of the deceased who can be trusted to carry out their last wishes.
What are the responsibilities of the executor?
Executors are in charge of managing all assets within the estate. This can include personal items, bank accounts and trusts.
The process of handling assets includes distributing them to the proper beneficiary. They’re also responsible for paying all debts and taxes, getting the death certificate, transferring and closing accounts as well as anything else that falls under estate administration.
How long will you be the executor?
Usually, the executor is in charge of estate administration until the probate process is complete. This can take months or even years to complete, depending on how complicated the estate is.
There are also limits to what an executor can do. For example, they can’t necessarily manage the estate before the court has approved them or signed an unsigned will.
They also can’t change the terms and conditions of the will or the beneficiaries. That means if there’s something wrong with the will or something that wasn’t updated by the deceased, they can’t easily fix it.
Can you say no?
Usually, the executor isn’t appointed by surprise. Ideally, there’s a conversation between the deceased and the executor before their death where they’ve talked about the estate plan and what your responsibilities would be.
Because of the huge responsibility that comes with being an executor, a person can always say no or change their mind. There are also professional services available for someone who wants the additional support