What are the basic duties of an executor or administrator?

Probably the most important duty is to ascertain and take possession of the deceased person’s property over which the executor or administrator has responsibility or control.

 Further, the fiduciary (executor or administrator) must determine the liabilities (debts) of the estate and determine the value of the estate over which the fiduciary does not have control (for tax accounting reasons) Further, the fiduciary must see to the payment of debts of the deceased and the estate (including taxes) and the sale or distribution of property of the estate in accordance with the dictates of the will and the law of Virginia.

 Generally, the fiduciary must file a complete inventory of the estate within 4 months of qualification with the Commissioner of Accounts. The Commissioner of Accounts is a local individual (generally an attorney) appointed by the Circuit Court to oversee and ensure that estates are properly handled. The fiduciary must also give written notice of qualification or probate to the heirs and beneficiaries of the estate or those who would have been the heirs, within 30 days after qualification or probate.

 Finally, the fiduciary must make an accounting (generally a list of all assets of the estate, all distributions and all assets on hand) on a yearly basis until a final accounting can be made. Often, a first and final accounting can be made at the conclusion of the first year following qualification. The fiduciary must immediately report any change of address or telephone number to the Commissioner of Accounts.

Show All Answers

1. What is probate?
2. Where should the will be probated?
3. What does dying "testate" or "intestate" mean?
4. Who inherits the property of an intestate (person dying without a will)?
5. Is the appointment of an executor or administrator and formal administrator and formal administration of an estate always required?
6. When should I probate the will or if there is no will seek to be appointed administrator?
7. What should I take with me to probate a will or qualify on an estate?
8. Who will be appointed by the court as executor or administrator?
9. What are the basic duties of an executor or administrator?
10. What taxes are there to be paid?
11. Is an executor or administrator compensated?
12. Where can I go for more information or answers to specific questions?