What do I do when mom or dad die and I am named the executor or executrix under the Will or the successor trustee? Or there is no Will and I seek to be appointed the personal representative?
Your first step is to contact an attorney. At our firm, we have been assisting individuals for over 50 years in quick and cost efficient administration of Wills, trusts, and estates.
Estates under $50,000 can now be quickly administered through a small estate affidavit procedure.
Estates over $50,000 require a formal probate court proceeding. In some instances, a formal supervised proceeding is necessary; however, an unsupervised proceeding may be possible with little Court involvement and reduced attorney fees.
Please note that if there is no Will or funded trust, the laws of intestate succession determine how the assets are divided.
Indiana trust administration duties
Trust administration is similar to unsupervised estate administration, but with no Court supervision.
Please keep in mind, however, that disputes even under trusts wind up in Court in a formal proceeding.
Attorney fees are based on the size and complexity of the estate and the time involved in handling the estate. Most trust and estate matters are concluded in less than a year. Most attorney fees are paid at the end, so you do not require money up front.
In Will, trust, or estate administration, secrecy can breed distrust among heirs and lead to unnecessary conflict. We can assist you in working through the process in an open and transparent manner that will avoid unnecessary conflict.
Inheritance taxation and federal estate tax exemptions
Recent repeal of Indiana State Inheritance Tax and increases of Federal Estate Tax Exemptions result in no State or Federal Inheritance and Estate Taxes in all but the largest estates.
Your inheritance is also tax free; however, there may be deferred income taxes on things such as IRAs and 401ks and the estate will need to file the decedent’s final income tax return and a fiduciary income tax return on income the estate or trust receives after death.
Marion County probate tax matters
Marion County requires that an attorney handle Probate Court proceedings and this is a complex area of the law in which an experienced attorney should be utilized in every county.
Most probate matters are handled by mail, so it is economical for us to handle Will, trust, and estate administration anywhere in the State of Indiana, not just in Marion and the contiguous counties in central Indiana.
You should keep track of your time performing your duties as an executor, executrix, personal representative, or successor trustee. You are entitled to a fee that is income taxable for your work should you choose to take it.
Call us – we can answer your questions and help you fulfill your duties
Please call us for a free telephone consultation to discuss how we can guide you through the Will, trust, or estate administration process. We understand your grief and the seemingly overwhelming task. We have helped families through this difficult time for over 50 years. We look forward to assisting you and your family. Please give us a call.