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3 Facts You Need to Know Before You Agree to Become a Personal Representative

One of the important steps in making a last will and testament in Greensboro, North Carolina is choosing different people, such as a personal representative, to represent your estate and your interests. For example, if you are a child with young parents you will want to include a clause that selects a guardian who will care for your children should you die before they become adults.

Yet even if you don’t have children, everyone making a will has to select an executor to represent your estate during the probate and estate settlement processes. Your executor can be anyone you like, but it’s important to select someone who will have the ability to comply with all probate requirements and ensure they get completed on time.

Also, you will want to discuss the position with anyone you select beforehand and make sure that person knows what will be expected of him or her. Here are the general duties and responsibilities personal representatives will have to be ready to handle.

Preparing The Estate

A personal representative’s duties don’t technically begin until after you have died and your will has been submitted to the probate court. However, a good executor is someone who gets ahead of the game by taking advance action and making sure he or she is prepared for what is to come.

For example, the personal representative should know where you keep your will and how to access it if it is ever needed. He or she should also have a good idea of what kind of property you own and where it is located. This is especially important if you own property outside of North Carolina because the executor might have to begin ancillary probate proceedings that are specifically designed to address out-of-state holdings.

Knowing this, you can greatly help your personal representative by creating a letter of instruction that includes the important details you don’t necessarily include in your will. Even though this letter won’t have the same legally binding authority as your will, it will go a long way in eliminating the headache of your executor having to do all the groundwork without your assistance.

Completing Probate

There are numerous different probate laws that impose upon creditors certain duties and responsibilities, as well as the legal authority to manage the estate. While you do not need to have an executor who is a probate expert, you will want to have someone who is capable of carrying out specific tasks in a specific order. Someone who is detail oriented, punctual, and who has a good eye for organization is ideally suited to the position of executor. As long as that person makes sure that he or she has a qualified probate attorney to help, the probate process should be simple.

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