If you’ve been appointed the executor of a loved one’s estate, you have many upcoming responsibilities. It’s important to make sure that your handle all of the affairs with care and dedication. Take a look at the information below to better understand the importance of keeping an open line of communication with beneficiaries. If you have any questions, or if you need help understanding your duties as executor, contact an estate planning attorney.
As an executor, it’s your responsibility to stay in contact with beneficiaries throughout the probate process. This helps the beneficiaries to understand the process and avoids frustration, hurt feelings, anger, and conflict.
Not keeping an open line of communication could create problems.
Take a look at the following example:
Kevin’s mother passed away several months ago. His mother’s boyfriend was appointed as the executor. Since his mother’s death, Kevin hasn’t heard a word from the executor or the executor’s attorney.
Frustrated, he decided to hire his own attorney to determine the status of his inheritance. After his attorney contacted the estate’s attorney, Kevin learned that his mother had been involved in a lawsuit at the end of her life, and that this issue was holding up the closing of the estate.
As you can see, the executor had no form of communication with Kevin. The executor was likely not in contact with other beneficiaries either. If Kevin hadn’t hired an attorney and gotten in touch with the executor, he may have assumed that he was being left out.
Beneficiaries have a right to know the status of their inheritances. As executor, it is your job to make sure that all beneficiaries are updated and know what’s going on. Take the time to communicate with beneficiaries throughout the probate process. If you have any questions, or if you’d like to discuss your role as an executor, consult with a qualified estate planning attorney.