Estate Planning Attorney: Deciding How to Distribute Assets

If you’ve been named the administrator of someone’s estate, you’ll have to make sure all of their assets are distributed fairly and correctly after their passing. This isn’t exactly an enviable task, but it is a necessary one. More than likely, you don’t have a lot of experience dealing with this kind of task, so it’s a good idea to seek professional guidance during the estate distribution process. Today in the Davidson Law Group blog, our estate lawyer team explains how assets should be distributed.

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First Steps

The first and most important step is to look at their will. Hopefully, they had an estate lawyer help them create a will, which will give directions as to how everything should be distributed. This way you’ll know who the beneficiaries are and how much each of them is entitled to. If they did not leave a will, you’ll need to distribute property in accordance with state laws.

After the will is read, you’ll need to get an inventory of all of the assets, both tangible and intangible. All tangible items, like jewelry, should be appraised to determine the value. You must also make sure that all taxes and accounts owed are taken care of. Once all of this has been covered, the distribution of the assets can begin.

Distributing the Assets

After a waiting period, you can begin distributing the assets to the appropriate beneficiaries. The waiting period occurs so that creditors can come forth before the assets are given out. During this waiting period, it’s important for the executor to keep up with financial responsibilities and prevent deterioration of the assets.

This may mean things like keeping a house in order, making mortgage payments, and more. Also, taking inventory of everything is important in case family members attempt to take some of the tangible assets before the waiting period is over. Keeping an estate lawyer in the loop during this process will also make things easier to manage.

Once the waiting period is over, begin to distribute the assets according to whatever documentation you need to follow, whether that be the will, a trust, or state laws. Once you bequeath an asset to a beneficiary, have them sign a receipt and date it. You don’t want beneficiaries trying to claim that you didn’t properly execute the estate.

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Contact an Estate Lawyer at Davidson Law Group

If you’re in need of an estate lawyer, choose Davidson Law Group. We can help you through the entire process of distributing an estate. Of course, we also help with making wills and trusts. Contact us in Fort Worth, Allen, or Tyler today for a free consultation and to speak with an estate lawyer.