After what was likely a long period of many months, you are finally ready to close out the probate administration of your loved one’s estate. To do so, you must file a petition with the probate court. This petition reports what you have done so far, requests a court order to distribute any remaining assets, and also requests approval of your fees and the fees of the attorney. Once final distributions go out, the personal representative can close the estate. You are probably wondering what to do once a probate estate is ready to close. Fortunately, if handled properly, you can remove yourself from any personal liability in the future by taking the appropriate steps.
Responsibilities of a Personal Representative After Probate:
- Once you obtain the court order for distributing assets of the estate, distribute these assets in compliance with the order. After distributing the assets, personal representatives receive a full discharge of personal liability with regard to all of the property covered by that order.
- Obtain a decree of discharge from the probate court. This decree protects you from any subsequent lawsuit that alleges you committed a misdeed while you administered the estate.
- Until the decree of discharge is entered, you still remain liable to the court if you are ordered to execute any judicial orders. In this case, the estate would still be open. You are still responsible for any tasks that the court assigns you.
- Once you have complied with all of the terms in the court order for the final distributions of the estate assets, file all receipts from the beneficiaries or heirs.
- After all receipts are filed, you are now able to file a petition for Affirmation of Final Discharge. Now, you are finally relieved from liability and your responsibilities are .
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