One of the most important decisions that a Nevada resident makes when preparing a will is who to name as the executor of the estate. However, an executor does not have to accept the job simply because he or she was named in this role in a will. Being an executor requires a lot of responsibility and may expose the individual to legal risk if he or she does not fulfill the role appropriately.
The executor is the person responsible for instituting the probate process. The executor should be aware of the location of the will and should be able to submit it to the probate court. This usually requires that the testator leave the will in an obvious location or with the executor specifically. Additionally, the executor is responsible for notifying beneficiaries, creditors and other interested individuals of the testator’s passing and of his or her appointment as executor. As part of this notification, the executor will have to provide proof of death by a valid death certificate to the probate court.
During the probate process, the court gives the executor the legal authority to act on behalf of the estate through letters testamentary. The executor may also be required to get professional appraisals on valuable items held by the estate. Additionally, the executor is responsible for protecting and maintaining the decedent’s property. The executor is entitled to be compensated for these efforts.
People who have been appointed as an executor may want to meet with an estate administration attorney to learn more about what the role entails. Legal counsel can often be of assistance throughout the process.