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Probate administration: Make a list and check it twice

When it comes to closing out the estate of a deceased loved one, numerous tasks require the attention of surviving family members. In order to make sure that nothing is missed during the Palm Beach probate administration process, it would probably make sense to make a list and check it often. As tasks are completed, they can be marked off the list.

Whether it is an executor or another family member, someone needs to inform -- well -- everyone of the death. This means creditors, banks, the Social Security Administration and anyone else that requires notification. The sooner this task is completed, the better, since failing to do so in a timely manner could cost the estate money, which would reduce the amount of distributions later.

Those being notified will more than likely need more proof of the death than just the word of a family member or executor. For this reason, obtaining numerous copies of the death certificate is crucial. It will be needed for just about everything. Everyone from the IRS to the cable company will need notification of the death and will probably want a copy of the death certificate for their records. The copies can be divided up among family members and the executor because the executor must complete some tasks and family members may help in other areas.

Probate administration is often not just a one-person job. Family members may assist in some areas in order to relieve some of the burden off the executor. Depending on the circumstances, there could be numerous people to notify, and sharing that duty could make it go faster, which could ultimately save the estate money. Another person who could provide invaluable assistance after the death of a loved one is a Palm Beach attorney who can help keep track of all of the tasks that require completion and represent the estate in court, with creditors and in any issues that arise.

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