Last Updated on February 28, 2024 by asifa
Just like any other process, estate planning also has its dos and don’ts. With that said, an appointed executor is responsible for several tasks when it comes to managing a deceased person’s estate and will.
However, here are a few things that an executor can’t do:
Table of Contents
Embezzle Funds from the Estate
There is no doubt that an executor is given the responsibility of an entire estate that can include several properties and priceless assets. An executor cannot embezzle funds from the estate that they are managing for their benefit in any circumstance. Subsequently, they cannot steal, fraud, or present fake documents that can harm the deceased person’s estate.
Ignore the Wishes of the Departed
The wishes of the person who wrote the will are supposed to be of high priority in estate planning matters. A probate attorney or an executor cannot simply selectively tend to the testator’s wishes depending on their ease of choice. Regardless of what a wish may be, according to state laws, the executor must fulfill all of them.
Add or Remove Beneficiaries
The testator selects the beneficiaries at the time of writing their will. Beneficiaries can be their children, spouse, family members, or anyone they wish to include in their will. Hence, an executor’s job is to only carry out the promised asset transfers without any changes of their own. It is also important to note that executors should not be acting in anyone’s interest but of the one who has appointed them.
Sell Properties from the Estate
An executor does not have the right to sell any form of asset or property from the estate without the wish or permission of the testator. All financial dealings such as debts and taxes are dealt with at the time of writing the will. Regardless of the situation, an executor cannot sell a property without the permission of a testator or a beneficiary.
Deal with Creditors as an Individual
When executors deal with creditors, they are representing an estate, not themselves. Hence, any dealings, side-bargains, or negotiations do not fall under the job description of an estate and will executor.
Skip on Book-Keeping
An executor must be prompt with their book-keeping regarding the matters and financial dealings of the estate. Skipping out on book-keeping paves the way for significant confusion regarding the tasks of estate planning. You should file all necessary records, documentation, and bookkeeping as soon as they are finalized.
Not be Transparent with Beneficiaries
After the deceased individual, it is the beneficiaries that the executor has to cooperate with. An executor cannot in any sense be transparent about dealings of the estate with the beneficiaries. Some documents are not open to the public, and the executor is well within their right to protect them. However, all dealings regarding assets and properties should remain transparent.