What is the Difference Between an Administrator and an Executor?
August 28, 2022
Administrators and executors of the estate, assets, or trust of a decedent (i.e., a deceased person) have the same responsibilities with regard to the will, trust, or estate that they are responsible for. The principal distinction between the two is how the administrator or executor is appointed. There are advantages to utilizing an executor instead of an administrator, although appointing an administrator may be necessary in many circumstances. Consult with an experienced estate planning attorney at the Choi Law Firm to better comprehend the rules, legislation, and conditions applicable to executors and administrators.
Principal Distinctions Between Administrators and Executors
When a person dies, their assets, property, and wills must go through probate. This is the legal procedure of transferring ownership and/or control of a decedent’s estate to the rightful heirs and/or according to their will.
An executor is a person named in a deceased person’s will to handle the deceased person’s estate. In the absence of a nominated executor or if there is no will, the court appoints an administrator. Once appointed, the functions of the executor and administrator are quite similar, and an estate planning attorney can help you appoint an executor so that your heirs and loved ones do not have to rely on the court to appoint an administrator and handle your estate.
Since executors are appointed in the deceased person’s will, they distribute the estate in accordance with the instructions contained in the will. In contrast, an administrator is only appointed when there is no executor named in the deceased’s will or there is no will at all. This means that the administrator must administer the estate in line with the laws of succession, which are normally the decedent’s legal relatives and next of kin.
The Choi Law Firm Can Assist With Executor Selection
You should have a will and designate an executor whom you know and trust thoroughly. Without a will, your heirs may be required to endure a lengthy legal process to distribute your possessions. With a valid will and a trustworthy executor who has the authority to make decisions regarding your estate in your absence, your loved ones can handle probate and complete the legal and financial formalities related to your estate more efficiently.
It is also advisable to identify numerous executors or alternate executors in the event that a named executor is unavailable or dies before you. An experienced estate planning attorney from the Choi Law Firm can assist with this procedure to ensure that the tax, financial, and legal repercussions of your demise are dealt with as swiftly, efficiently, and competently as feasible.
Appointing an Administrator when there is no Executor
Obviously, it is possible for a person to die without having drafted a will or appointing an executor. Such circumstances will necessitate the appointment of an administrator, which can lead to several issues. Under these circumstances, the Choi Law Firm can advise you through any legal challenges you may encounter. It is important to note, however, that the court will seek the deceased’s family tree and kinship information prior to the distribution of his or her assets.
This is called an affidavit of kinship. However, creating this document and submitting it to the court with the necessary proof and evidence might be challenging, especially if the deceased had no close family members such as a spouse, children, or other relatives. In circumstances where the closest surviving relatives are unknown or distant relatives such as cousins, a public administrator may be appointed as the administrator of the decedent’s estate.
With or without close relatives, a kinship hearing may be required to establish the deceased’s relationship to the family. The assistance and advice of an attorney, such as the skilled estate planning attorney at the Choi Law Firm, may be useful in this situation. Our attorney will handle the often-complicated hearing at which all of the deceased’s relatives present birth, marriage, and death certificates to show their familial ties to the deceased.
Complicated Will Drafting and Administrator and Executor Responsibilities
There are various obstacles that you and your family may encounter when preparing an estate plan, and many issues can arise after a person dies. The first obstacle is the creation of a will and the selection of an executor. The second option is the selection of an administrator in the absence of an executor. The third may involve establishing the proof of kin and family links in a kinship hearing and acquiring the evidence required in this hearing from relatives who may have lost contact over the years or passed away in separate towns or districts.
The posting of a bond for the decedent’s estate is an often-overlooked concern. In some instances, a court may order an estate administrator to post a bond to guarantee the safe keeping of a deceased person’s estate. Despite the fact that the majority of wills contain clauses that waive this need, it must be examined.
In addition to drafting a will, choosing an executor, and posting a bond, there are numerous other ways that bad estate planning can harm your loved ones. The second is failing to inform relatives and friends of your plans before it’s too late. Avoid naming only one executor, and consider the expenditures associated with final arrangements, such as burial and funeral expenses. Assign Power of Attorney and Healthcare Representatives if needed, and always include information on your digital assets, relevant charities, and the tax consequences of your will in your estate plan.
Contact the Choi Law Firm Today for a Confidential Evaluation of Your Case
Nothing should be left to chance; plan today to avoid problems and hassles tomorrow. Our team is here to assist you, and we have the knowledge and experience necessary to handle estate planning, executor, administrator, and will and testament matters of any kind in a professional manner. To learn more about how we may assist you, contact the Choi Law Firm immediately for a confidential case consultation.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.
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