What are my first duties as an executor?
Once you’ve decided to act as the executor your duties will include:
- reviewing the will and ensuring it is the deceased’s last will by completing the appropriate searches
- attending to the funeral
- locating all of the deceased’s assets including bank accounts, investments, any real estate they may own, safety deposit boxes, vehicles, pensions, government benefits, etc.
- ensuring the deceased’s assets are properly insured
- determining what debts the deceased had outstanding when they died and determining what ongoing payments will need to be made
- finding names and addresses for the spouse, children, next of kin and any other beneficiaries named in the deceased’s will
- canceling any credit cards or ongoing subscriptions (cable, gym memberships, monthly charitable donations)
- applying for death benefits and obtaining death certificates
Being and executor can be quite time-consuming and stressful, complicated by the deceased’s ongoing business obligations to be wound up, assets that are difficult to locate and value, feuding beneficiaries, and complicated tax filings.