Estate Administration is the process of collecting and valuing the assets of a decedent, paying debts and estate taxes, and distributing assets under the terms of the decedent’s Estate Plan or state intestacy laws.
We represent Personal Representatives to provide ongoing guidance and counsel during the entire estate administration process. This work often includes the following:
- Identifying and gathering information about the decedent’s assets and liabilities.
- Valuing the decedent’s assets as of his or her death or the alternate valuation date.
- Filing a probate petition with the probate court for appointment of a Personal Representative.
- Preparing and filing Massachusetts and/or federal estate tax returns.
- Making necessary tax elections, including qualified terminable interest property (QTIP) and portability elections, and allocating generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax exemption.
- Distributing assets to beneficiaries.
- Funding trusts and subtrusts as required by the terms of the estate plan.
- Providing post-mortem planning advice to minimize estate and income taxes.
- Analyzing complex issues of estate administration including asset valuation discounts and estate tax includability and apportionment, among others.
- Protecting Personal Representatives from potential liability.
We aim to guide Personal Representatives through the often challenging and emotional process of estate administration.