Those who are named as executors can find themselves swimming in fairly complicated waters. Some people taking on the challenge of estate administration are in the enviable position of being the sole beneficiary and having no family conflicts. However, for the majority of Ontario executors, maintaining professionalism and doing everything by the book is important in order to avoid legal challenges from other beneficiaries.
Those who are administering an estate must serve the best interests of the beneficiaries within the constraints of the will and the law. It is important to keep beneficiaries informed of activities related to the estate on a fairly regular basis. This will hopefully provide them with the confidence that everything is being done fairly and professionally.
Executors often have quite a to do list on their hands. They must collect all assets of the decedent, including assets that are owed to the estate owner. They must also take stock of any liabilities or debt, ensuring they are paid off before money is distributed to beneficiaries. There are many complexities that can arise in these seemingly simple tasks; for example, valuing assets can be contentious, tracking down items to inventory and figuring out insurance policies in the interim can be a challenge.
Organization is critical for someone overseeing estate administration. Clear records that account for all money being spent and all items inventoried in an estate can help people to justify their costs and approach should beneficiaries have questions. An Ontario estate administration lawyer can help individuals navigate these responsibilities and ensure the proper records are in place to prevent legal challenges.