You don’t know what you don’t know!

omg blog 1 v2So some time ago, your mother, father, aunt, grandmother, or friend probably took you for a drink, looked you in the eye and asked you an important question: “Will you be the Executor of my estate?” You were flattered, and not knowing what to say or what it involves, said yes. You are a good son / daughter / or friend, but did you understand what you were getting yourself into?

 

You don’t know what you don’t know!

Some important factoids:

* In a best-case scenario, it will take eighteen (18) months to fulfill your duties and responsibilities. The institutions that you will interact with (banks, CRA etc.) may increase this time as you await responses.

* In a best-case scenario the deceased will have left you a roadmap of their financial affairs so you will not have to start from scratch. Compiling information from nothing and forensic accounting will add to the length of time, cost and skills needed.

* Being an Executor requires a combination of skills, and the time to undertake them. In our experience, very few individuals have all of the skills required, and few who have the skills have the time. Being a member of the Sandwich Generation with a career, children in school and aging parents or an aging surviving parent is two or three full-time jobs.

* You are both allowed and encouraged to engage the appropriate professional services (lawyers, accountants, tax accounts, etc.) to undertake your duties. However, many people get overwhelmed by choosing professional service providers and it can take hours to compare and choose who is the right provider for your circumstances.

* The learning curve for undertaking Executor responsibilities the first time will reduce the amount of time needed if you are an Executor to more than one person. But, how often do you anticipate serving as an Executor?

* Your fiduciary responsibilities are to the beneficiaries. If you are both a beneficiary and the Executor, the other beneficiaries may perceive a conflict of interest. Disagreements will also lead to the length of time required to wind-up an estate.

Our value proposition is that we can provide some or all of the planning and administrative duties of your responsibility better and faster, to save you time and money, not to mention frustration.

We can provide coaching and assistance at three levels on a fee-for-service basis:

  1. We can meet and provide you with a plan of how to undertake your responsibilities.
  1. We can meet, provide you with a plan and direct you to resources to undertake your responsibilities.
  1. We can meet, create a plan, and develop a protocol where we meet on a scheduled or as needed basis to allow you to fulfill your responsibilities professionally, while minimizing your exposure and time commitment.

In any instance, we strongly encourage anyone who has accepted the responsibility of being an Executor, that as a condition of acceptance, the requestor has a current, accurate and accessible inventory of their assets and obligations. Our firm can help prepare the documentation quickly and easily and for a reasonable fee.

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