How much should you pay an executor of a will?
Well, just like we talked about in the last video or the last question. They absolutely are entitled to get paid if they want to get paid or if you'd laid that out in your last will and testament.
How much should they get paid?
Well, it actually depends on the jurisdiction we have seen jurisdictions across the United States be anywhere from 3% to almost 15% of the total estate. So in those higher end states, if there was $100,000 in assets, the executor could potentially be entitled to $15,000 to administer the estate. Now that's in addition to attorney fees and court costs. So remember that the other thing you can do is you can actually lay out in your last will and testament exactly how much you want your executor to receive. And we've actually seen that a lot where people might have an estate of several hundred thousands of dollars.
Who should Administer your estate?
They will talk to a friend or maybe a third party, or maybe their son or child or a cousin, an aunt and uncle, somebody and they will ask them, Will you be the executor of my estate when the time comes? And if you do, I will reimburse you x amount of money, and it just depends on what the person wants to pay the executor. We have seen a couple of thousands of dollars. I think the highest one I've ever seen is probably around $20,000, but that estate was quite substantial and they also wanted to, in addition to just paying them for being the executor, wanted to give them a little bit as part of the will. So a little bit of that was tied in into that.
how much should you pay an executor?
Again, it depends on the jurisdiction in some jurisdictions. Actually, in most jurisdictions, if the executor is wanting to get paid, the court will specifically require that they turn in invoices just like the attorney might have to and show exactly what time they spent and what they were doing in that specific instance.
What can you pay an executor to do?
If one day they went to the bank and spent three hours with a banker trying to decipher all the different accounts, then they can charge for that three hours at the bank. Their invoice might say something to the effect of went to the bank to decipher different bank accounts. Again, it depends on the jurisdiction, but most courts require an executor to turn in invoices for the specific work that they did, and it could also be for travel. They might also have expensive copying costs, storage costs. There's a lot of expenses that the executor might have to maybe pay out of their own pocket until the probate is completed, and usually the court will allow those reimbursements.
Complications for executors
However, I should caution that I have seen where the courts will not reimburse other siblings. So let's say that Joey was in charge of being the executor, and Joey turned in all of his invoices for maybe hotels car rentals that were needed to assist him in being the executor of the estate. Now, maybe on one of those trips, a brother or sister came and they also had hotel costs and meals. And I have seen where the courts have specifically said no to the sister or the brother receiving reimbursement because they were not the executor of the estate. So just be careful with that. The executor is absolutely entitled to get paid for the work that they do if they want it. A lot of times executors will waive any sort of compensation, even their costs just out of love for the person who passed away and to make things a lot easier for the other heirs or beneficiaries of the estate.
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