Your executor is the person who is responsible for distributing your assets after you die. Your Will specifies who you name as your executor.
The following are some of the duties of an executor:
• Locate Documents. The executor locates the original Will and files it with the County Clerk of Court after you die. He also obtains original death certificates for use in administering the estate.
• Open Probate. If needed, the executor will go before a judge and get authority from the judge to pay the debts and distribute the assets. Letters of Office is a document issued by the judge giving the executor this authority.
• Notify Interested Parties. The executor will contact the relatives of the person who died (the decedent) as well as the individuals to whom the decedent left assets in his Will.
• Pay Claims of Creditors. The executor pays from the decedent's assets any valid debts of the deceased person.
• Distribute Assets to the Beneficiaries. After the debts have been paid, the executor distributes all remaining assets to the individuals the decedent has specified.