Orange County Estate Administration Lawyer
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Estate administration involves the handling of a decedent's assets upon his or her death. It is similar to probate administration except that is also includes cases of intestate succession, where the decedent did not leave a will to direct the distribution of the estate. In this case the estate's assets are distributed according to the law of the state. When a person dies intestate, the court will appoint an administrator, also referred to as an
executor, to oversee the process of disposing of the estate. A family member may undertake to administer the estate by applying to the
probate court for appointment as the executor.
As administrator, the family member then conducts the estate administration:
This is a complicated matter in which a layman can experience much frustration trying to navigate. It is also possible to run afoul of the law, such as through simple errors which lead to allegations of breach of fiduciary duty. For experienced guidance, you are urged to contact an Orange County estate planning attorney.
Duties of an Estate Administrator
The estate administrator has a number of duties to perform under the court's supervision. The administrator must collect up the assets of the decedent and prepare an inventory. It is necessary to notify all known creditors so they may put in their claims for the payment of debts. When the claims come in, the administrator must approve or reject them with a stated reason.
If the administrator rejects a claim, the administrator may need to defend his or her action in estate litigation before the probate court. With court approval, the administrator may sell estate assets to pay claims or make the distribution of assets easier. The administrator pays the decedent's bills, prepares the decedent's final tax return and pays any
tax liabilities. The administrator then prepares a petition to distribute the assets for the court's approval.
Understanding the Importance of Legal Assistance
At P. Arnsen Blakely, we provide experienced legal guidance to clients in Orange County and throughout Orange County, and our estate administration lawyer has been providing counsel on matters of probate and estate administration for more than 40 years. Knowing that each estate matter is different, we listen fully to our client's account of their case and strive to provide the service the client exactly needs. We are experienced in assisting administrators, heirs and creditors in estate administration matters.
We urge you to contact our office now for a free case evaluation to discuss your concerns and learn more about how we can be of assistance.