While designing an estate plan, many people set up trusts to manage their financial affairs. A trust may specify a “personal representative.” In this post, we outline the responsibilities of the “personal representative.”
If you or a loved one is facing a trust dispute under Ohio law, contact Columbus-based trust litigation attorney Chuck Bendig for a consultation.
Ohio Estate Disputes
If you have been appointed as a dependent administrator or an independent executor, you will have certain fiduciary duties. For example, there is a duty of competency, a duty of disclosure, a duty of loyalty, and a duty of impartiality. These duties are intended to defend the interests of the heirs of the Decedent’s estate, the estate creditors, and the taxing authorities. The non-exhaustive list includes:
- The executor/administrator should keep the heirs of the estate informed of the administration and use best efforts to promptly collect the assets and administer and settle the estate.
- The executor/administrator must always be in a position to account for all revenue received, money spent, assets sold/purchased, and as to all other matters that directly or indirectly affect the estate.
- The executor/administrator must refrain from commingling the Decedent’s property with his/her own or that of any of your businesses or the Decedent’s business interests. Commingling usually is done with cash, and it is imperative that the executor/administrator does not commingle the Decedent’s funds with funds that are not part of the estate, not even for a day.
- The executor/administrator must not leave funds uninvested.
- The personal representative must refrain from self-dealing with any portion of Decedent’s estate.
Compliance can be accomplished by setting up suitable estate accounts and managing the estate accounting in the manner detailed by your estate attorney.
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