In Newcastle, Oklahoma, probate is a legal procedure that a court must go through before giving effect to a will. Before putting a will into effect, a court has to determine that it is valid.
During probate, the court in Newcastle, Oklahoma will determine the validity of the will, identify and inventory the decedent's assets, account for the decedent's debts and back taxes, and distribute the decedent's property, among other things.
The executor of the estate is often named in the will. If not, the probate court in Newcastle, Oklahoma will name will appoint a person to serve as executor. This is normally the person who stands to inherit the most under the will.
The executor is the person responsible for initiating the probate proceedings. The person who would inherit the most from the will is appointed, because they have the greatest motivation to move the process along as quickly as possible, so they can get their inheritance.
Duties of the Executor in Newcastle, Oklahoma
The executor has many duties with respect to the will. First, it is his or her job to actually initiate probate proceedings, which often must be completed before the will is given effect.
Additionally, the executor has to make sure that the decedent's relatives and other people named in the will have notice of the testator's death, normally through the filing of a copy of the official death certificate.
If the decedent was even moderately well-off financially, it's likely that they'll have considerable amounts of both debts and assets. The executor is tasked with formulating an accurate accounting of the debts and assets of the estate, so as much of the decedent's debts can be paid off as possible.
Additionally, the executor is obligated to take a leading role in showing the validity of the will. The executor obviously has an incentive to see the process through, since they cannot inherit until probate is complete.
How Can A Newcastle, Oklahoma Lawyer Help?
Because this can be (though isn't always) a fairly difficult process, it's a good idea to get a brilliant probate lawyer in Newcastle, Oklahoma, especially if you find yourself being the executor of an estate, and aren't sure how to proceed.