You may choose to hire the attorney that prepared the Will, but it is not required. An executor is entitled to expend estate funds to be represented by an attorney. 1. Illinois courts have determined that charging fees based upon a percentage is not legally authorized by the statute. In Illinois, an executor files with the local county court and opens a probate case. period. The final accounting to the probate court must include estate checking account statements, invoices, receipts, financial statements, gains or losses on sale of assets, bills of sale and other items applicable to the particular estate. Probate & estate administration attorneys handle succession issues and can help you navigate court processes, payment of the deceased person's debts, distribution of property according to the will or estate … If you breach either of these duties, then the beneficiaries could sue you in court. Question: “My mother died about 3 weeks ago, and I am the Executor of her estate. Illinois Intestate Estate vs. an Estate with a Will When the deceased person died with a valid will in place, the will directs the administration of the estate, from the appointment of an executor … Basic Requirements for Serving as an Illinois Executor. The executor of an estate is a person named in the decedent's will to manage the distribution of the estate's assets. In this article, we explain Illinois Probate and Estate Law 2020 as well as recent changes to Illinois Estate and Probate Law. Additionally, the executor must directly inform known creditors and publish a notice in the local newspapers to alert any unknown creditors of the proceedings. The Executor must identify, locate and secure all the estate assets and then figure out which ones are probate assets. An executor is entitled to a 6% commission on any income that the estate earns. This FindLaw article will show you how to file for executor of an estate without a will. In Illinois, an executor has 60 days from the day he becomes executor to make an inventory of the estate. Before choosing an executor for your will, it's important to understand what the executor's responsibilities are in Illinois. The Illinois Probate Act is very vague. ), set up an estate bank account, and deposited the $400,000 into the estate bank account. Having said that, the executor is also obligated to file an inventory which identifies the assets of the estate. Select a probate attorney – As executor, you are entitled to hire an attorney and have the attorney’s fees paid (or reimbursed) from the estate’s assets. ; ... Next, the executor must take inventory of the decedent’s entire estate and submit it to the court within the first 60 days of the executor … A person whose estate exceeds these exemption levels may need do some additional estate planning to minimize or eliminate death taxes. An executor is a fiduciary, and as such, has a duty to its beneficiaries to carry out the terms of a Will with the highest degree of fidelity and good faith. The decision to serve as an estate executor should not be taken lightly: it is a significant responsibility, and requires substantial effort.. When you serve as the executor of a will, you’ll need to grapple with a lot of paperwork as you coordinate the distribution of assets and property. The executor has a fiduciary duty to the estate, and must account for all expenses, as well as managing estate assets. The executor might also have to prepare and file an estate income tax return if any assets earn income during the probate period, and prepare and file a personal income tax return for the decedent’s final year of life. If you would like to learn more about the role of an Executor, visit our pages on how to be appointed Executor in an Illinois Estate or what an Executor does in Illinois. If you are the executor of an estate, a probate & estate administration attorney can help. Once an Executor or Administrator is appointed by the Probate court, he/she is empowered under Illinois law to act as the official representative of the estate. We answer: What is Probate? As Executor, you've been given the duty to manage the estate and carry out the directions of the will; however, a court may require official documentation. Since you know that you are the Executor, you should locate the original Last Will, and get a general idea in regard to the amounts of her assets and liabilities. Misappropriation of Funds. The executor is also in charge of using estate assets to pay valid claims, such as funeral expenses. If that person is not qualified, or if the decedent dies without a will, then Illinois law provides an order of preference to determine who serves as the administrator or executor of the probate estate. When an estate contains less than $100,000 in total assets, with no land, it’s considered a small estate, and can be settled using Illinois small estate procedures. 2 A. Who is an Executor? An affidavit summarizing the person’s estate, and how it should be distributed, is filled out and notarized. Becoming an Estate Executor. This court-appointed representative is known as an administrator. Here are the requirements in Illinois. Every state has some rules about who may serve as the executor of an estate that goes through probate. An executor of the estate is named to dictate who gets what property upon the death of the deceased. Illinois law provides for "reasonable" compensation for the work your executor must perform in administering your estate. When someone dies without a will, probate court can step in to select someone to perform these duties or a loved-one can volunteer to fill the vacancy. If you are considering acting as an estate representative for an Illinois probate estate, feel free to contact us at (847) 991-2250 for a free initial phone consultation to discuss representation. Part of the obligation of marshalling includes protecting assets. Find the laws governing the probate administration of real estate at 755 ILCS 5/20. An estate tax is imposed on the value of property when a person dies before any property is inherited. If a person dies without a will, he or she has also likely not named an executor for the estate. The State of Illinois also has an estate tax return with the same deadline, but that must be filed if the estate is in excess of $4,000,000.00. Reasonableness isn’t simply a function of the value of the estate. The Illinois Estate Tax exemption amount was $4,000,000. The executor has probated the Will, sold the assets of the estate (for example, sold the house, liquidated the brokerage account, etc. Generally, a gift of property from a person to his or her spouse who is a U.S. citizen is not subject to a gift tax or an estate tax. The inventory must include all "the real and personal estate which has come to his knowledge and of any cause of action on which he has a right to sue," according to the Illinois Probate Act. State law sets out guidelines for the fees an executor or attorney may collect from an estate. The specifics can vary depending on the size and nature of your estate, but in general, estate executor… An Illinois Executor's Responsibilities. Naming an Administrator for an Illinois Estate. Nuts & Bolts of Illinois Probate Estate Administration . As an executor, you have a duty to exercise reasonable care when dealing with the estate’s property. The executor would be within her rights to secure the house. In Cook County, probate judges generally will not allow an executor to file pro se. The executor or administrator of an Illinois probate case are known as the personal representative of the estate. In February of 2008, Sandra Relf was injured […] The executor must notify the beneficiaries and inheritors of the estate of the probate proceedings. In this case, the family members closest to the deceased share the right to appoint an administrator for the property. It says only that the fee must be “reasonable” without providing any additional guidance. So, for instance, assume that the entire estate is worth $400,000. The executor must prepare and file a federal or state estate tax return, or possibly both if the estate exceeds either of these tax exemptions. If you would like to learn more about the role of an Administrator, visit our page on what happens if no will exists in an Illinois Probate estate . You also owe the beneficiaries a duty of loyalty and good faith. Your executor must be: at least 18 years old; a U.S. resident, and; of sound mind -- that is, not judged incapacitated by a court. If you need more help deciding if you should accept compensation for serving as executor, read this guide.. A Letter of Appointment of Executor can make everything official so you can focus on the task at hand. The Decedent’s Assets. If the will provides that the real estate should go to a particular individual or group or individuals, the deed to the real estate should be transferred to those beneficiaries, assuming that there are enough other assets to pay claims against the estate. When you die, an executor must collect your remaining assets, pay your creditors, and distribute your property according to a will -- or if you do not leave a will, according to state law. How should I proceed in fulfilling my role as Executor of her estate?” Answer: First, my condolences on your Mother’s death. Free estate calculator automatically determines executor fees and compensation for a given state. The personal representative of an Illinois probate estate is entitled to receive compensation from the estate for his or her efforts. In a testate Illinois estate, the person entitled to serve as the executor is the person named in the decedent’s will. The federal government and the State of Illinois both will collect estate tax on inheritance from a deceased person. Even if the Estate does not exceed $5,340,000.00, the executor may want to file a federal estate tax return to elect “portability.” b. At the same time, the Executor will ask the court to be officially appointed as the Personal Representative (PR) of the estate. We’ll go over some of the most important forms here. I. A: The executor is lawfully charged with the obligation and the right to marshall the estate assets. How Should an Executor Distribute Real Estate in an Illinois Probate Estate? While actual calculations are more complex, examples include 5% of amounts received or paid out in cash for Texas estates, or 4% of gross value for CA estates worth <$100K. If you have concerns about the conduct of the executor of your loved one’s estate, or if you have any questions about estate planning or probate, speak with an experienced Illinois estate planning & probate attorney. b. Illinois Executor Deed. The quintessential executor misconduct occurs when an executor tries to steal assets from an estate. Rest assured that whatever step of the probate process you’re working through, there’s likely a form for it. An Executor or Personal Representative is appointed under If you’d like a bit more (free) help understanding the estate settlement process, you can answer a few simple questions and get a free custom executor plan here on Executor.org.. And, here are the executor fees by state, so you know how much compensation is reasonable. Understand potential liability. In Relf v. 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