Being named as executor is not an honorarium. Rather, it is a serious legal responsibility requiring experience and knowledge. An executor must fulfill many tasks, often taking quite a lot of time and energy. An executor has specific legal duties and obligations proscribed by state and local law. It is very important to name an executor who has the capability to impartially accomplish the instructions set forth in your will.
Counsel Trust can serve as executor, co-executor or administrator of your will. The advantage of naming a corporate executor (vs. a family member or friend) is to professionally and impartially fulfill the settlement and distribution instructions of your will (often avoiding disputes that can arise within families). Counsel’s trust and estate officers have multiple years of experience settling many estates – with difficult asset management and distribution challenges (such as is often the case with managing, assessing and transferring business interests).
Your will controls the ultimate distribution of all your personal (probate) property such as liquid and illiquid assets, bank accounts, business interests, household goods, vehicles and collectibles. Your probate estate does not include assets that pass directly to named beneficiaries (contractual assets) such as life insurance, IRA’s, 401k plans, annuities, etc. or assets that you have placed in a revocable or irrevocable trust.
The executor of your will takes responsibility for settling your estate – filing and advertising ‘letters testamentary’, identifying and valuing your assets, filing an inventory at the court house, payment of final expenses and taxes and ultimately, controlling the distribution of your estate to your beneficiaries. If you own an illiquid small business or partnership – the estate settlement process can become quite complicated. Depending on the asset make up of your estate, it can sometimes take years to settle before your beneficiaries receive their inheritance.