You’ve got a probate estate open and you’re the personal representative, but don’t know how to fully administer the estate. Plus, you must pay creditors, settle all the debts, pay all the exemptions, allowances and administrative expenses. Let’s go over on how to distribute an estate.

Once you’ve liquidated all the estate assets and are ready to distribute, we do what’s known as a summary of administration. In this summary, there are a lot of numbers, recapping what has occurred and anything that’s about to occur to close out and conclude the administration of the estate.

The inventory value represents what was reported to the probate court as the decedent’s assets at the time of death. Any income would be reflected in the summary as well, in cases where the estate received money after the death such as dividends or tax refunds. After reporting the income, you report the total expenses.

Expenses can include the costs and filing fees, attorney fees and inventory fees. There are other fees which may be applicable, such as funeral and burial expenses, homestead allowance, family allowance and exempt property. Other expenses such as claims and losses are also applicable.

Once all the expenses are considered, you should have a total amount of funds which are available for distribution. If an individual has a will, the court will adhere to the decedent’s wishes in fund distribution. If there is no will, the funds will be distributed through the laws of intestacy. Depending on the family tree, the statutes will determine who gets what.

While it may be fine to some, it may be something undesirable to others. Having an estate plan with a will can make sure the distribution of funds meets his or her desire. If you want to learn more about probate administration or would like to create an estate plan with a will that avoids the laws of intestacy, give The Probate Pro a call today at (877) YOUR-FIRM.