The Executor's Job

An executor has a big responsibility—the kind that comes with managing someone else’s money. That’s because the executor is in charge of a deceased person’s assets, and must gather and safeguard them. The executor must also see that debts and taxes are paid, and then transfer the remaining assets to the people or organizations who inherit them.

If you’re an executor (also called a personal representative in many states), you must be honest, conscientious, and fair to creditors and beneficiaries. You don’t have to be a financial genius, and you don’t need a law degree. Just realize that the job will involve a lot of responsibility and a lot of detail—and require a lot of patience.

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