Their “estate” is the property they owned when they died. In an estate case, an executor (if there is a will) or an administrator (if there is no will). There are many variables that can affect the duration of the probate process. If the estate is small and you have a reasonable amount of debt, a fair expectation is six to eight months.
With a larger farm, it's likely more than a year before everything settles down. This is especially true if there are a lot of debts or real estate in several states. The executor is always the executor. For example, let's say that 20 years after the death of the deceased, the personal representative discovers a previously unknown bank account.
The executor may have distributed all other assets 19 years earlier, but the executor still has the right to pool this new bank account. The executor still has this power because the estate never closed; he simply ran out of things to do. However, the executor's liability also remains. After appointment, the executor or administrator must take possession of all of the decedent's assets subject to the probate process.
After the assets of the estate have been inventoried, the period for filing the creditor's claims has expired and all claims have been paid or resolved, the necessary assets have been sold and all required tax returns have been filed and the taxes due have been paid, then the estate can be distributed. This is partly because creditors against the estate need time to learn about the process and make any claims against the estate. After the appointment, the executor or administrator must submit a special form to the court entitled probate letters or letters of administration. Sales of real estate assets must be included in a Gains on Sales program, if the asset sold for more than its appraised value, or in a Losses on Sales program, if the asset sold for less than its appraised value.
Executors and administrators are personal representatives appointed by the court of the assets of persons who have died. Finally, after all of the decedent's assets have been collected, the assets are sold, and taxes and debts are paid, the executor or administrator must distribute the remaining assets in accordance with the decedent's will or the rules of intestate succession, if the decedent died without a will. The executor of a will is responsible for ensuring that the wishes of the deceased are fulfilled, as well as managing the final affairs of the estate. The Distribution Program must include a list of all cash or assets that have been distributed to an heir or recipient of the estate through a preliminary distribution.
If you are a beneficiary and the executor named in the will has no plans to file the will or start the probate process, you will likely have an argument that you are violating your fiduciary duty with respect to the estate. Income, such as dividends and interest received after the date of death, will not be reported on the return, but will be reflected in the wealth income tax return, or by the surviving joint lessee if the asset was under joint lease. These fees can be waived, of course, and if the executor is also an heir, it makes sense to exempt them to save income taxes. The reader is encouraged to review the other articles on this site for other aspects of estate planning and trusts.
Once accounting is prepared or waived, a petition is drafted that is a summary of the inheritance and the actions taken.