When someone makes you the executor over his or her estate, they are entrusting you with handling a variety of efforts that are all highly important. Because there is an investment of time when you take on the executor role, you may receive a fee in exchange for your efforts. If so, the value of the estate often determines how much you might receive for payment.
Per the New York Bar Association, the exact steps you must take as an executor are going to vary based on the size and contents of the estate you are overseeing. However, many New York executors are responsible for the following.
Filing a petition in surrogate court
Your executor duty requires you to file a petition in surrogate court that provides details about the estate. The petition must include the date of death and anyone who has an interest in the estate, such as any beneficiaries named therein.
Paying all bills and taxes
As an executor, you must take care of any outstanding debts the deceased party left behind. You are also responsible for paying any applicable taxes. If the estate is large enough, you may also need to pay estate taxes on it.
Collecting debts owed to the estate
It is also among your duties as an executor to collect any debts anyone owes to the estate.
Distributing property from the estate
It is also your responsibility to distribute property from the estate in accordance with the wishes of the deceased.
In most cases, the probate process lasts a matter of months. In especially complex situations, though, it may last a year or longer.