One of the duties of an estate executor is to make a list of the estate’s assets. In some cases, this is relatively easy because the estate owner created a list prior to death and left it in a place that was easy to find. However, this is often not the case, and the executor must go looking for the needed information.
One of the best places to locate assets is the county tax assessor’s website, which should have a listing of any real estate owned by the decedent. Searches can usually be performed in a number of different ways, including name and address. Some municipalities and counties also provide access to the data contained in their geographical information (GIS) systems. Additionally, maps are often available that show the location of properties and how they are laid out.
Tax returns provide a wealth of information, including sources of income. If the decedent was receiving interest or dividends, the name and address of the financial institution providing those payments should be listed on a 1099 form. Other sources of information include the decedent’s home or office and the Unclaimed Property Division of the Nevada Treasurer’s Office.
A comprehensive estate plan allows a person to determine how their assets will be managed after they die or become mentally incapacitated. Such a plan can help reduce taxes, control the distribution of assets and minimize family disputes. Many plans include a list of assets and detailed information as to where they can be found. However, developing a comprehensive estate plan requires a thorough knowledge of the planning process. This is where a lawyer can help.