"Estate administration" refers to the procedure which must be followed when the estate of a person who has recently died is being distributed, either according to his or her wishes as laid out in a will, or the laws regulating the distribution of the assets of a person who dies without a will.
If the decedent had the foresight to draft and execute a will in Westlake, Louisiana, the estate is normally administered in a way that follows the instructions the will lays out, as closely as possible.
Most frequently, a will names a person to serve as executor, whose job it is to guarantee that the estate is properly administered.
The executor is typically whoever stands to acquire the most money or property if the will is given effect, since that is the person who likely has the most incentive to do their part in seeing that the probate process plays out to completion.
What if The Will Does Not Name an Executor?
If a will in Westlake, Louisiana is silent as to who should be the executor, it is up to the court to determine who should serve in that capacity.
This is most frequently the person who would inherit most under the will, or under the intestacy scheme of Louisiana. Intestacy is when a person dies without having made a will, or if a will turns out to be invalid. The intestacy laws of each state control how property is distributed in such a situation. In most states, it simply goes to the closest living relative.
In cases where the will doesn't name an executor, or the person named is unable to take on that role for whatever reason, any person who has some direct share in the decedent's estate (either because they're named in the will or stand to inherit by intestacy) can petition a Westlake, Louisiana court to be assigned executor.
Whoever ends up as the executor, it is their responsibility to serve as the personal representative of the estate. They will be accountable for taking account of all of the decedent's assets and debts, as well as notifying beneficiaries who may be estranged from the decedent, among other things.
Can a Westlake, Louisiana Estate Administration Attorney Help?
Some people are surprised when they find out they've been named the executor of a relative's estate. The responsibilities can seem daunting, but with the help of a reliable Westlake, Louisiana attorney, the process almost always goes pretty smoothly.