Estate Administration in Texas: Executors and Administrators
Due to the complexities involved in the probate process, it is usually a good idea to hire an experienced Bryan-College Station probate attorney to assist you with probating your loved one's estate.
What is Probate?
Upon a person's death, the assets and/or liabilities (collectively known as the “estate”) that have not been directed into alternative arrangements, such as trusts, must be probated. Probate is a complicated court-directed process which involves: (1) collecting, inventorying and appraising assets; (2) paying and collecting debts; (3) filing and paying estate taxes; and (4) distributing assets to beneficiaries. This process will occur whether the decedent left a will or not.
Executors and Administrators
Generally, a personal representative is chosen to oversee the probate of the estate. That person is called either an executor or an administrator, depending on how the person was appointed. If a person is appointed as the personal representative in the decedent's will, he or she is called an “executor.” If the personal representative is appointed by the court, he or she is referred to as an “administrator.” Administrators are generally held accountable to the court.
Texas Probate Law
There are two types of executors/administrators, and the type that is appointed for an estate can make a big difference in how the estate is administered.Texasprobate law is a bit different than other states' probate laws in that it allows for a much more expedited and less complicated process. Texaswas able to do this by allowing executors and administrators to be either “independent” or “dependent.” If the administration of an estate is dependent, it can oftentimes take longer and be more costly, since the court is involved in the process more than in an independent administration. This may lead people to think that independent administration is superior. However, that is not always the case. The type of administration that is best for a person's estate really depends on the estate itself—each type of administration has benefits and drawbacks.
If need assistance in planning for the administration of your estate or the estate of a loved one, contact a dedicated Bryan-College Station probate lawyer from the Peterson Law Group at (979) 703-7014 for a consultation or fill out our online contact form.