When a person dies, a process recognized as "estate administration" must be carried out. This refers to all the processes which must be followed in distributing a person's estate to their heirs or devisees.

If the decedent wrote a will before his or her death in Middlesex, New Jersey, the process will be carried out according to the directives included in the will, assuming they are legitimate and enforceable.

Commonly, the will appoints an executor whose job it is to oversee the administration of the will.

The executor typically has at least some work cut out for them. This evidently raises the issue of compensation. The easiest way to guarantee that the executor does his or her job is simply to appoint the person who has the most to gain from the will. That way, they cannot inherit until the process is done.

What if The Will Does Not Name an Executor?

If a Middlesex, New Jersey will does not assign anyone to serve as executor, or there is no will, the court has to choose someone to fill that role.

Normally, the person chosen to be executor is the one who would benefit most under the will, or under New Jersey's intestacy laws. "Intestacy" refers to a situation in which a person dies without a will, or "dies intestate." Every state has laws to address this situation, and there isn't a lot of variation from state to state. Normally, the decedent's property will go to his or her closest relative, and if absolutely no living relatives can be found, it will go to the state.

If the will doesn't name anyone as executor, or the individual who was named as executor is no longer living or cannot be found, anyone who has a direct interest in the will in Middlesex, New Jersey can apply to the court to be the executor.

Once an executor is finally named, he or she becomes responsible for serving as the living embodiment of the estate, utilizing all legal means to protect the estate's interests (such as mounting plausible legal defenses against creditors).

Can a Middlesex, New Jersey Estate Administration Attorney Help?

If you are the administrator of an estate, and are not a legal and/or financial professional, you might face legal or tax issues with which you are unfamiliar. A Middlesex, New Jersey attorney would be extremely helpful in such a situation.