Losing a parent is devastating, no matter what age it occurs. If it happens when the children are adults, it is likely at least one will be in charge of ensuring the parent’s final affairs are settled. Acting as the executor of a New York estate can be challenging, but necessary.

When the deceased parent creates an estate plan before passing, the probate process is much easier. If so, it is necessary to obtain the estate documents to determine how the parent intended the assets to be distributed and how to handle other related matters. The estate plan could also indicate who is in charge of addressing the remaining affairs because the parent could name an executor in the will.

In addition to estate planning documents, it is also important to obtain copies of the death certificate. Many accounts need to close now that the parent has passed, and most companies require a death certificate to close certain accounts. It is also possible for funds to become available when those accounts close, but it is important those assets are not distributed until the end of probate unless they were payable-on-death accounts.

In the aftermath of a parent’s passing, even these few steps may seem like a burden. Unfortunately, the executor has a significant number of responsibilities to handle during probate, in addition to those mentioned above. New York residents should not try to handle the tasks alone. Most times, enlisting legal assistance is a smart decision.

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