Assisting Clients With Kentucky Estate Administration
Probate is the process of collecting a person’s assets when they die, paying all creditors and any taxes due, and distributing the remaining assets to beneficiaries in accordance with the decedent’s will. If a person dies without a will, then any assets remaining after debts and taxes are paid are distributed according to the Kentucky laws of dying intestate.
Not all assets need to go through probate, such as property that passes automatically to a named beneficiary (commonly referred to as “transfer on death accounts”). These include individual retirement accounts, checking and savings accounts, life insurance policies and real estate property deeds.
Understanding The Role Of An Executor
If the decedent had a will, it likely names a family member or trusted friend who will handle the execution of the estate. This person is known as the executor or personal representative. It is an honor to be named executor of a will, but it also can be intimidating. An executor has a fiduciary duty to act with honesty and diligence. Missteps can lead to legal challenges or legal action against the executor.
If an estate has substantial holdings, it is common for an executor to enlist the assistance of an experienced estate administration lawyer, such as those at True Guarnieri Ayer, LLP. Assets from the estate can be used to pay a probate attorney’s fee. We help executors with:
- Inventorying the estate
- Identifying and paying creditors
- Identifying assets that do not need to pass through probate
- Distributing assets to beneficiaries
- Trust administration
- Addressing tax issues
- Contested wills
Ready To Assist You With Estate Administration
If you have been named executor of a will, or if a loved one has died intestate, we welcome the opportunity to help you navigate the estate administration process. Call Richard M. Guarnieri, William C. Ayer, Jr., or Philip C. Lawson at 502-783-7662 or use our online contact form to schedule a meeting.