When someone dies, there is a procedure in place that helps ensure the orderly distribution of his or her assets to the beneficiaries as designated by the Last Will and Testament, or the legal heirs in the event that no will exists. This procedure is called probate, and it is the process whereby the court appoints someone to manage the estate of the decedent. This may be a person designated in the decedent’s will as an executor, or if there is no will, it will be an administrator appointed by the court. A will’s executor or administrator has many administrative responsibilities to ensure that the final matters of a person’s estate are handled properly.
Each executor or administrator must be approved and officially appointed by the court. Generally, if the decedent left a will, the person in possession of the will has the responsibility to file it with the circuit clerk within 30 days of death. The person nominated as executor then has the responsibility to ask the court to probate the will.
There are numerous responsibilities required of an executor or administration and Mr. Nichelson is able to assist you with the probate process and help you carry out your duties.