Any time you are dealing with the loss of a family member, it's a difficult and emotional time. However, for those who are experiencing this loss for the first time, there are often many questions that need to be answered. For example, who do you notify? How do you settle their estate? There are many things that you will need to consider, including what happens with the money owed to the deceased as well as that the deceased owes. Here are some things you need to know.
You Can Collect Money Owed To The Deceased
If the individual passed away with accounts outstanding and payments owed to them, those debts owed don't just disappear. However, in order to be collected, the payments must be collected by the executor of the estate or whoever is in charge of estate management. This is true even if the estate was put into a trust before the individual passed. The trust administrator has the ability to seek payments on behalf of the deceased.
In fact, if it comes to the need to file lawsuits to enforce those debts, the administrator or executor also has the legal right to do that. He or she can file a lawsuit that is in the best interest of the estate, including those to collect debts owed.
You May Need To Pay Debts Owed
Any outstanding debts still owed by the deceased don't automatically disappear upon their death. In fact, in some situations, those debts must be paid out of the value of the estate. In most states, creditors are given a certain period of time, such as a year, to file a debt claim against the estate. If they do not file a claim in that time period, they forfeit their right to collect on the debt. However, if they do file their claim with the courts within the appropriate time, you will have to settle that debt using money from the estate.
You Can Negotiate
As the administrator of the trust or the executor of the estate, you have the same legal rights to negotiation and settlement as the deceased would themselves. That means that you have the ability to negotiate new payment terms for debts owed to you, as well as to negotiate settlements on any debts owed by the deceased.
The best thing you can do when it comes to settling an estate, especially if there are debts owed or money owed to the deceased, is to work with a probate lawyer who can help you understand your rights and the legal requirements of the process. For more information, contact law firms like Katzman Logan Halper & Bennett.`